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This large sphere just about fits in the palm of an adult woman’s hand, looks like a lead cannonball in colour and texture, but pick it up and you will find it is disconcertingly light. That is because it is made from expanded polystyrene foam, coated in a layer of graphite. This type of rigid foam is widely used for packaging where bulk but not weight is required. It is also a good thermal insulator and shock absorber. Polystyrene can also be carved easily, formed in moulds and recycled. Why this ball of polystyrene is coated in graphite, we are not quite sure! Graphite is conductive so perhaps it was designed for some form of scientific instrumentation looking at conductivity. We prefer to imagine this item as a fake shot put, possibly starring in the pivotal scene of a historical drama about the Highland Games. If you have any ideas about what this could be used for, please let us know.
Sample ID: 104