Tech: Personal corrections could reduce energy consumption in buildings, says Rutgers' study – (Report)


What if, instead of a thermostat, you would turn to high-tech, flexible fixes that came to your clothes – while you significantly reduced your electric bill and carbon footprint?

Engineers at Rutgers and the Oregon State University have found a cost-effective way to produce thin, durable heating patches using intense light pulses to blend in with polyester small silver wires. Their thermal efficiency is almost 70 percent higher than similar corrections generated by other researchers, according to a study conducted by Rutgers in Ljubljana Scientific reports.

They are cheap, they can be powered by metal batteries and can create heat, where it needs a human body, since they can be sewn as patches.

"This is important in a built environment where we use a lot of energy by heating the buildings – instead of selectively heating the human body," said Rajiv Malhotra, senior author of the Department of Mechanics and Space Engineering at Rutgers University-New Brunswick. The department is at the Engineering School.

It is estimated that 47 percent of global energy is spent indoors indoors and 42 percent of energy consumed for heating empty space and objects instead of people, notes the study. The solution of the global energy crisis, which is the main factor in global warming, would require a significant reduction in energy for indoor heating.

Personal management of heat, which focuses on warming the human body as needed, is a new potential solution. Such corrections may one day help anyone working or playing outdoors.

Rutgers and Oregon State engineers have created highly efficient, flexible, durable and inexpensive heating meals using "intense pulsing light sintering" to combine silver nanotechnologies that are thousands of times thinner than human hair on polyester fibers using pulses of high energy light. The process takes 300 million seconds per second, according to a study funded by the National Science Foundation and the US Walmart Manufacturing Innovation Fund.

Compared to the current state of the art in the thermal patch, the creation of Rutgers and Oregon State creates more heat on the surface of the patch and is more resistant to bending, washing and exposure to humidity and high temperature.

The following steps include checking whether this method can be used to create other smart fabrics, including sensors and circuit-based patches. Engineers also want to determine how many patches are needed and where they should be placed on people to keep them while reducing indoor energy consumption.


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