“Something Weird Happens When You Keep Squeezing”

posted by Jason Kottke Nov 14, 2023

This fascinating and well-produced video from Vox introduces us to what happens to materials that are put under vast amounts of pressure — I’m talking center of the Sun pressures upwards of 100 billion atmospheres. Scientists are just beginning their explorations of the strange things that happen “when you keep squeezing”.

Tens of thousands of kilometers below Jupiter’s surface, physicists think hydrogen will go through another change becoming a shiny conductor of electricity. It’s thought that a lot of Jupiter is made up of this metallic hydrogen.

We think of high energy density materials as completely inverting the periodic table. So your metals become transparent and your transparent materials become metals. And all these gases become solids…

Water transforms into ice that conducts electricity: Black, Hot Ice May Be Nature’s Most Common Form of Water. Hydrogen can be compressed into a metal: Metallic hydrogen finally made in lab at mind-boggling pressure. Sodium can turn clear: Metal Discovered To Become Transparent Under High Pressure. So weird and interesting!