Two scientists first isolated graphene in 2004 and went on to win a Nobel prize for bringing to the world’s attention a “wonder material” that conducts electricity better than anything else and has the potential to revolutionize fields from computing to travel, recounts the Guardian.
It’s a safe bet they never foresaw this application: This super thin and strong form of carbon is entering the world of fashion—in the form of a little black dress with tiny LED lights that change color in time with the model’s breath.
(See a video here.) Graphene powered the lights and functioned as a sensor, while nylon fabric helped fill out the dress itself. The team behind it says it suggests dresses of the future could change color on the fly, notes Smithsonian.
The dress was created by high-tech clothing expert Francesca Rosella for tech-fashion company Cute Circuit, and Britain’s Next Top Model finalist Bethan Sowerby took it for a spin on the catwalk in Manchester, reports the Manchester Evening News.
Because graphene is, as the BBC describes it, stronger than diamonds yet stretchable like rubber, researchers say it is still in its “infancy” in terms of its use in real-world applications.
The Silicon Republic reports that among several recent breakthroughs, graphene has been shown to transmit massive amounts of electric current at the nano level, which could have far-reaching effects on electronics.
(Graphene’s structure has even inspired a new condom.)
This article originally appeared on Newser: See the World’s First Graphene Dress