Fighting against global warming and limiting the climate damage to our planet are important and topical challenges that concern us all, as well as the activities we carry out on a daily basis.
This was the starting point for the scientists who created the special paint we are going to tell you about, a very special product which has one striking characteristic: it is the whitest, “coldest” and most reflective paint. never produced .
image credit: Jared Pike – Purdue University/Eurekalert
Would you ever have thought that painting a surface a certain way would help fight global warming? If you answered no, you haven’t discovered this painting yet. Ultra-white, ultra-reflective and endowed with a real superpower: to keep buildings and objects on which it is used cool.
We all know that a dark color absorbs more heat from the sun’s rays, while a light color has the opposite effect. We experience this, for example, every time we get into a black car in the summer sun rather than a white car: the temperature differences are obvious to say the least.
image credit: Joseph Peoples – Purdue University
It was the reflective power of the color white that prompted engineers at Purdue University, Indiana, USA, to invest their efforts in such a special paint. The paint they developed, described in detail in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, has extraordinary power in this regard, as it can reflect up to 98.1% of the sunlight that strikes it. A percentage that makes it the whitest in the world.
If you are wondering what global warming has to do with all of this, know that with these characteristics, painting buildings with this paint means ensuring that the temperature inside is lower and controlled, so as to ensure cooling. “natural” and not artificially induced by air conditioners, which contribute to emitting more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere by consuming energy.
image credit: Marco Verch/Flickr
But how can this paint be so white and cold? It’s simple: the “recipe” contains barium sulfate, a fine, white salt that is also used in the production of paper and cosmetics. Thanks to this element, the paint created by Purdue University has unprecedented cooling and reflection abilities, according to scientists involved in the project.
Tests showed that in midday sunlight, materials painted with this dye were 4.4 ° C cooler than room temperature, while at night they remained over 10 ° C cooler. Remarkable, isn’t it? Imagine that this paint is used on the majority of buildings: it could be an important step forward to help the environment.