by Alex Elder
LiquiGlide, a company founded by a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has developed a new technology that enables sticky substances to flow easily across the surface of any container. This technology works by coating the container’s interior with a specialized lubricating liquid which then makes the surface permanently wet and slippery. This technology was initially marketed towards commercial uses such as glue and ketchup bottles as well as paint cans. Applying LiquiGlide’s technology to these sorts of containers would greatly reduce the amount of waste involved when remnants of these products are left over, unable to be used by the consumer due to their viscosity. Widespread implementation of this technology could have major environmental payoffs by reducing waste. In a few years, LiquiGlide expects this technology to be ubiquitous.
However, the technology has important implications beyond ketchup bottles; it can also be applied at a larger-scale industrial level and potentially allow more efficient methods of pumping crude oil. LiquidGlide has already demonstrated that its technology works very well with this substance. Incorporating this technology into the oil and gas industry would greatly decrease the amount of viscous oil lost in oil drums, pipelines, and other surfaces that oil clings to. A system involving LiquidGlide technology would reduce waste in addition to increasing efficiency and reducing the number of cleaning cycles necessary.
Chang, K. (2015). “With New Nonstick Coating, the Wait, and Waste, Is Over.” The New York Times.
LiquiGlide Industries: http://www.liquiglide.com