Recently skin-like fabric material that cools the body more efficiently is developed by a team of multidisciplinary researchers at Stanford University.
Science journal, the researchers from Stanford report that they used nonporous polyethylene to develop a textile material which aides radiative cooling while maintaining breathability, wicking and necessary mechanical strength.
According to the report in Science, the researchers have also devised an instrument to simulate skin temperature. The use of nonporous polyethylene fabric resulted in the lowering of skin temperature by about 2.7 degree centigrade when compared with another commonly used next-to-skin fabric.
According to Yi Cui, an associate professor of materials science at Stanford and the lead author of the study, the fabric effectively cools the person, which makes cooling the building unnecessary thereby saving energy.
Nonporous plastic textile transports the body heat as infrared rays due to the nanostructured polyethylene. Researchers modified the polyethylene material that is commonly used in battery development which enables it to be opaque to visible light but transparent to infrared rays so that the heat can be dissipated.
According to Professor Shanhui Fan, professor of electrical engineering at Stanford, who co-authored the study, this research can lead to the development of new materials that can trap or let go infrared radiations.
The research is multidisciplinary one involving photonics, nanotechnology and chemistry. Indeed, it shows that new developments in advanced textiles can come from schools that are nontraditional textile strongholds, reflecting the nature of the next phase of textile research and development.