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At the end of the article are my comments.

One of my readers was kind enough to send me the link to this article.

First Fabric That Automatically Cools or Insulates Depending on Conditions

Friday, February 8, 2019 21:49

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.

Despite decades of innovation in fabrics with high-tech thermal properties that keep marathon runners cool or alpine hikers warm, there has never been a material that changes its insulating properties in response to the environment. Until now.

University of Maryland researchers have created a fabric that can automatically regulate the amount of heat that passes through it depending on conditions. For example, when conditions are warm and moist, such as those of a sweating body on a summer day, the fabric allows infrared radiation (radiant heat) to pass through. When conditions become cooler and drier, the fabric reduces the heat that escapes. Infrared radiation is a primary way the body releases heat and is the focus of this new technology.

A paper on their work was just published in in the journal Science.

“This is the first technology that allows us to dynamically gate [regulate] infrared radiation,” said YuHuang Wang, a UMD professor of chemistry and biochemistry and one of the paper’s corresponding authors.

Credit; University of Maryland

The researchers created the fabric from specially engineered yarn coated with a conductive metal that allows. Under hot, humid conditions, the strands of yarn compact and activate the coating, which changes the way the fabric interacts with infrared radiation, too allows more heat. They refer to the action as “gating” of infrared radiation, which acts as a tunable blind to transmit or block heat.

The base yarn for this new textile is created with fibers made of two different synthetic materials—one absorbs water and the other repels it. The strands are coated with carbon nanotubes, a special class of lightweight, carbon-based, conductive metal. Because materials in the fibers both resist and absorb water, the fibers warp when exposed to humidity such as that surrounding a sweating body. That distortion brings the strands of yarn closer together, which does two things. First, it opens the pores in the fabric. This has a small cooling effect because it allows heat to escape. Second, and most importantly, it modifies the electromagnetic coupling between the carbon nanotubes in the coating.

“You can think of this coupling effect like the bending of a radio antenna to change the wavelength or frequency it resonates with,” Wang said. “It’s a very simplified way to think of it, but imagine bringing two antennae close together to regulate the kind of electromagnetic wave they pick up. When the fibers are brought closer together, the radiation they interact with changes. In clothing, that means the fabric interacts with the heat radiating from the human body.”

Depending on the tuning, the fabric either blocks infrared radiation or allows it to pass through. The reaction is almost instant, so before people realize they’re getting hot, the garment could already be cooling them down. On the flip side, as a body cools down, the dynamic gating mechanism works in reverse to trap in heat.

“The human body is a perfect radiator. It gives off heat quickly,” said Min Ouyang, a professor of physics at UMD and the papers other corresponding author. “For all of history, the only way to regulate the radiator has been to take clothes off or put clothes on. But this fabric is a true bidirectional regulator.”

According to the Science paper, this is first textile shown to be able to regulate heat exchange with the environment.

“This pioneering work provides an exciting new switchable characteristic for comfort-adjusting clothing,” said Ray Baughman, a professor of chemistry at the University of Texas who was not involved in the study. “Textiles were known that increase porosity in response to sweat or increasing temperature, as well as textiles that transmit the infrared radiation associated with body temperatures. However, no one before had found a way to switch both the porosity and infrared transparency of a textile so as to provide increased comfort in response to environmental conditions.”

More work is needed before the fabric can be commercialized, but according to the researchers, materials used for the base fiber are readily available and the carbon coating can be easily added during standard dying process.

“I think it’s very exciting to be able to apply this gating phenomenon to the development of a textile that has the ability to improve the functionality of clothing and other fabrics,” Ouyang said.

The paper, “Dynamic gating of infrared radiation in a textile,” Xu A. Zhang, Shangjie Yu, Beibei Xu, Min Li, Zhiwei Peng, Yongxin Wang, Shunliu Deng, Xiaojian Wu, Zupeng Wu, Min Ouyang, YuHuang Wang, is published in the February 8, 2019 edition of the journal Science.

This work was supported by the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), U.S. Department of Energy, as part of its “Delivering Efficient Local Thermal Amenities (DELTA)” program (Award No. DE-AR0000527). The content of this article does not necessarily reflect the views of this organization.

“RADIANT HEAT loss is for all intents not a factor of any consequence. Radiant heat which the human body produces just like the sun is always absorbed by the first solid object that it hits, just like the objects that the sun’s rays hit. If you are active and the temperature is 8o degrees F your core temperature is 98.6 degrees. As your core temperature increases due to your activity your internal body temperature increases and automatically sends the excess heat to your skin surface. Along with the heat coming off of your skin surface; which is radiant heat, there is moist vapor coming out of your pores which is also warm. This vapor will condense coating the surface of your skin which absorbs the heat on the skin surface and cools your body; this is because the moisture is absorbing that heat. The heat coming off of your skin surface is radiant heat which is being released into the air. Now if you are dressed and the air temperature is 40 degrees F your body is still giving off radiant heat only now it is being absorbed by the fabric; i.e. the object covering your body. It does not travel any further away from you. If you are dressed for temperatures as low as -40 degrees F again you are giving off radiant heat but the loss getting outside the layers of clothing is again non-existent, therefore radiant heat loss is not to be considered.”

All of the Chinese people responsible for this article obviously do not have a clue about radiant heat whether it is from the human body or the sun. The excerpt is from my article “HOW TO STAY WARM and UNDERSTANDING INSULATION and HEAT LOSS” that you will find on my home page. Someone should tell them to read it. For those who want as complete an explanation of the subject I recommend reading it.

Paragraph #1- material cannot change its insulating properties in response to the environment. Material is in animate so if the temperature is 80 degrees it will be 80 degrees and if it is 2 degrees it will be 2 degrees.

Paragraph #2- radiant heat does not pass through any solid object such as the yarns that make up this fabric. It is absorbed by the material. Radiant heat passes though the atmosphere.

Paragraph #10- Ray Baughman is a man of little or no knowledge of textiles; they do not increase porosity, they have whatever porosity they have and that is it, they can only absorb so much moisture. The material will absorb whatever radiant heat it gets from the body and never lose it. No one before when and no one today has a fabric that can and I quote;” provide increased comfort in response to environmental conditions”.

Paragraph #11- this material will or should not be commercialized, but you never know when a company like the north face or Columbia sportswear will seize the opportunity to make the newest and greatest from this material and in my opinion screw the public with advertising this unmitigated B/S.

I no longer wonder if the journal of science has any understanding of the gibberish that they seem to publish as science. From my perspective there is no longer higher education occurring out there. There are only people looking for their 15 minutes of fame.

One reader sent me the link in the WSJ that I could read. The RL electric parka is only $900.00. Most comments were negative and it can’t be laundered. This was a project of Ralph’s son apparently. When you have been raised with a silver spoon your world is a lot different than those of us who weren’t. I guess the boy needed something to do.

I sometimes wonder if the degradation that I am seeing in the textile business is also taking place in other industries. People with very little or in many case any knowledge in the textile industry come off as “experts” and nobody in the industry questions them about the product they are selling as to how it came about. This attitude is what allowed gore to succeed by never having to prove what they were selling. These Chinese characters located at the University of Maryland have developed nothing at the expense of the U.S. TAX PAYERS because the university administrators only know they received our tax dollars via the ARPA-E, U.S. department of energy. When you own a boat you realize it is a whole in the water into which you throw money, is it any different for us taxpayers and the government.


It appears that the state wide tax scam is now delayed until June 1, 2019.

On Friday I received a call from a senator’s lackey or gofer since I guess the senator became aware of me being interviewed for an on line publication about this law to collect taxes for every municipality of the state. This lackey wanted to know if I would come to Denver to testify “for” the law and I was amazed that he would ask me to do that even though I stated unequivocally that I was against it. I told him I was not about to go to Denver number one and number two which is more important I wanted the law voided out. The call ended forth with.

Samuel Clemens (alias Mark Twain) once encountered a senator and said to him “suppose you are an idiot” and then he said “suppose you are a senator”; but I repeat myself.

I guess it applies!!!

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