There have been many initiatives on ways to stop global warming throughout the years. From spreading awareness to practicing ways to prevent climate change — you’ve heard it all. However, Purdue University researchers discovered a new approach to help reduce or eventually eliminate it: through the whitest paint in the world.
The Indiana-based university’s mechanical engineering professor Xiulin Ruan and his graduate students invented the said paint that would reflect heat instead of absorbing it.
‘When we started this project about seven years ago, we had saving energy and fighting climate change in mind,’ said Ruan in a podcast episode of This Is Purdue.
Typical commercial white paint gets warmer it’s designed to reject heat by reflecting only 80% to 90% of sunlight, which can’t make surfaces cooler than their surroundings. But Ruan’s lab invented a very reflective paint, which also made it really white. In fact, the formulation reflects 98.1% of solar radiation as it is emitting infrared heat.
Since it absorbs less heat from the sun that it releases, an area covered with the paint is cooled below the surrounding temperature without consuming power.
The researchers explained that the new paint formulation can be used to coat an entire roof area of around 1,000 square feet and it could result in a cooling power of 10 kilowatts, as stated in a published paper.
‘That’s more powerful than the air conditioners used by most houses,’ Ruan mentioned.
Ruan’s lab discovery at Purdue University has earned a spot in the Guinness World Records book as the whitest paint that was ever made. The researchers have also partnered with a company to produce the paint on a higher scale for it to be available on the market.
Banner: (L) Purdue University photo/John Underwood, (R) Unsplash/karlsolano