COOL OUTFIT, HOT STUFF
Step aside, Kanye West. The next big thing in fashion comes from a group of Stanford University materials engineers. The team has developed a reversible fabric that keeps the body cool when needed and heats it up when things get chilly.
This same team developed Nanope, a fabric based on plastic wrap that can lower body temperatures by 3 C. In the new reversible version, a copper layer traps body heat, warming up to 4 C.
These materials could have broad environmental impacts by reducing energy consumption. Lead researcher Yi Cui hopes that regulating people, instead of buildings, will cut down on air conditioning use, he told Popular Science.
READY FOR ITS CLOSE UP?
Not quite. The team is working on making a ibre-based version that looks and feels more like traditional textiles, rather than plastic wrap.