Nuclear Pasta: The Strongest Material in the Universe

Neutron stars, formed when dying stars collapse into itself, are small and incredibly dense. About a kilometer below the surface of this type of star, atomic nuclei are squeezed together until they merge into a clump of matter thought to be shaped like blobs, tubes or sheets - which physicists lovingly referred to according to their pasta equivalents: gnocchi, spaghetti and lasagna.

Turns out, this nuclear pasta is incredibly dense: about 100 trillion times the density of water and is incredibly strong - breaking a nuclear pasta would require 10 billion times the force required to crack steel.

(Photo: Casey Reed/Penn State University/Wikimedia Commons)

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