NightHawkInLight. 2018. A Super-Material That Can Be Made In The Kitchen (Starlite Part 1). Video. Retrieved from

NightHawkInLight. 2020. History of a Lost Supermaterial & How To Make It (Starlite Part 2). Video. Retrieved from

NightHawkInLight. 2020. How to Make a "Cookie Dough" Forge (Starlite Part 3). Video. Retrieved from

From the videos' descriptions, β€œIn this video I attempt to recreate a lost supermaterial called Starlite. This material could supposedly resist temperatures up to 10,000 degrees Celsius, having undergone testing by NASA and the Atomic Weapons Establishment in the UK. I believe in this video I have come close in function to the original formula for Starlite, but there is still some work to be done. My result works very well, but for a few reasons I may talk about in a future video I do not believe Starlite used PVA glue as it's binder, and I also suspect a different CO2 producer was used instead of baking soda. More experiments are required.”

From Part 2, the recipe is:

  • 40g flour (the binder)
  • 20g corn starch (reduce stickiness)
  • 20g powdered white sugar (when heated, it melts and provides the elasticity and lubrication needed for the carbon foam to form, even when the material is dry)
  • 20g baking soda or Borax (reacts to form CO2 and H2O when heated, forming the carbon 'bubbles')
  • approx. 25mL water

The flour and water serve as the binder; the corn start reduces the mix's stickiness; the sugar, when heated, melts and provides the elasticity and lubrication needed for the carbon foam to form (even when the material is dry); and the baking soda / Borax reacts, when heated, to form CO2 and H2O and, thus, the carbon 'bubbles'.

The Borax (whether added to the above, or in place of the baking soda) provides resistance against mould and insects, and significantly increases the material's strength, making it comparable to refractory alumina bricks, and possible to form into stronger 'tiles'.

To insulate against heat before the intumescent material begins to (or can) carbonise, one would need to add something with an inherent insulative quality β€” e.g., diatomaceous earth, fumed silica, glass micro-balloons.

  • Last modified: 2022-03-15 21:45
  • by Peter