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Air-conditioned buildings bring welcome relief to people coming in from the heat. But creating that comfort comes with a cost to our wallets and the environment in the form of increased energy bills and greenhouse gas emissions. Now researchers report in ACS Nano the development of a new material for clothing that we could one day don as our own personal cooling unit, without any external energy needed to power it.
Functionalized clothes have become the norm in recent years. We now have moisture-wicking and smell-proof athletic gear, and shirts and tops coated with a chemical layer that blocks ultraviolet rays. Clothes that help cool us down, however, have been harder to achieve. So far, such attempts have resulted in materials that incorporate bulky components, require a lot of energy or are expensive. Liangbing Hu and colleagues at...
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