Upsalite, a new material possessing record-breaking surface area and water adsorption abilities, was recently discovered by researchers at Uppsala University in Sweden. The material according to the researchers should allow for drastic reductions in the total amount of energy needed to control environmental moisture in the electronics and drug formulation industries as well as in warehouses, storage facilities, etc.
Upsalite is essentially a water-free disordered form of magnesium carbonate. The material is filled with empty pores all having a diameter smaller than 10 nano meters. This pore structure gives the material a totally unique way of interacting with the environment leading to a number of properties important for application of the material. It absorbs more water at low relative humidities than the best materials presently available; the hydroscopic zeolites, a property that can be regenerated with less energy consumption than is used in similar processes today.