💚 Chameleon-Inspired Home Heating 🦎

💚 Chameleon-Inspired Home Heating 🦎

By
Dennis Kamprad

Read Time:5 Minutes

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Stay impactful,

Happy Tuesday 👋

Here are the impactful insights that I have for you today:

  • A chameleon-inspired material that can cool and heat our homes 🦎
  • Spider silk as a sustainable alternative to synthetic fabrics 🕸️
  • Get involved in World Vegetarian Day 🌽
  • And more… 💚

When you think about chameleons, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind?

For me, it’s their awe-inspiring way to change colors 🤩

But did you know they also use their color-changing capabilities to regulate their temperature?

I have to admit that I had no idea before reading about how we could apply this process to our homes. So let’s get right into it!

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🦎 How a Chameleon-Inspired Material Can Be an Energy-Efficient Way to Cool and Heat Homes

1️⃣ The big picture: Researchers have developed an energy-efficient coating to keep buildings warm in the colder months and cool in the warmer months. The material is inspired by the way that the Namaqua Chameleon changes color to regulate body temperature. To make the coating, researchers mixed thermochromic microcapsules and specialized microparticles to form a suspension which is then painted onto a metal surface. When external temperatures rise, the solution changes to a lighter, more reflective color. Conversely, it turns a darker shade of gray in cooler weather to absorb more heat. 

2️⃣ Why is this good news: Traditional heating and cooling systems are very energy intensive and often use unsustainable fossil fuels. In addition, current systems are generally only capable of keeping a house warm or cool, not both. This new technique uses energy-efficient coating as a naturally occurring adaptation of the chameleon to achieve temperature regulation, without using additional energy.

3️⃣ What’s next: The new material has already been tested against traditional heating and cooling methods, with impressive results. For example, when compared to three conventional coatings, it was the only one that was able to effectively cope with rapid temperature fluctuations during a single day. The research is still in the early stages so the next step is to scale up the design for commercial use.

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📢 More Good News…

🧊 New laser technology to study climate change patterns in ice:

  • Researchers from the Astro-Glaciology Laboratory in Japan have developed a new laser-based sampling system to study the composition of glacial ice.
  • The new technology has a 3mm depth resolution which is 3x smaller than current systems. This means that it can detect annual temperature fluctuations in a shorter time period.
  • The new LMs device (laser-melting sampler) will help scientists to better understand climate change. 

🧬 RNA molecules extracted from extinct animal species for the first time:

  • Scientists have successfully isolated and sequenced 100-year-old RNA molecules (ribonucleic acid) from the extinct Tasmanian Tiger. These have been preserved at room temperature in a museum collection.
  • This resulted in the reconstruction of skin and skeletal transcriptomes from an extinct species for the first time.
  • It’s hoped that this development will play a role in conservation and help to resurrect extinct species in the future. 

🕸️ Spider silk synthesized for the first time as a green alternative to synthetic fibers:

  • Scientists in Japan have synthesized spider silk from genetically modified silkworms for the first time.
  • The process produces fibers 6x stronger than kevlar (the material used in bulletproof vests). 
  • These findings demonstrate a technique that could be used to manufacture an environmentally friendly alternative to synthetic fibers, like nylon and polyester.
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🌽 Event of the Week: World Vegetarian Day

👉 Did you know that this Sunday, October 1, is World Vegetarian Day? This event was set up to promote the benefits of a meat-free diet, both for the environment and for human health. 

1️⃣ The big picture: World Vegetarian Day was founded in 1977 by the North American Vegetarian Society to encourage people to adopt a vegetarian lifestyle and raise awareness of the ethical, environmental, and health-related reasons to eat a plant-based diet. Today, the event is used by vegetarian organizations around the world to spread information about the benefits of vegetarianism. Many food outlets and restaurants also get involved by only serving plant-based meals on this day.

2️⃣ Why is this important: Globally, over 50 billion animals die every year for human consumption. Furthermore, two-thirds of all the animals we eat are factory-farmed. These animals are often raised in constricting cages with no access to natural light. Eating meat also carries a large carbon footprint with the animal agriculture industry producing 18% of all worldwide greenhouse gas emissions. This is 5% more than all transport emissions combined. Vegetarians have just 30% of the environmental impact compared to meat eaters.

3️⃣ How can you get involved: The best way you can get involved in World Vegetarian Day is to cook up a vegetarian meal for your friends and family. Alternatively, try a plant-based meal at a restaurant. You can also consider buying fresh produce from a farmers market or spreading awareness in your local community.

Additionally, you can check out the organizations below that fight for a healthier planet and improve animal welfare:

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📜 This Week in History

⚓ September 26, 1580: English Admiral Francis Drake completed his circumnavigation of the world, after nearly three years at sea. 

📖 September 26, 1888: Famous writer and poet T.S. (Thomas Stearns) Eliot was born in St. Louis, Missouri. He later became known as one of the most influential writers of the modernist movement in poetry, rejecting conventional verse for free expression. 

🌏 September 27, 2019: A week of protests on climate change, led by youth activist Greta Thunberg, led to millions of people getting involved in the demonstrations. 

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💭 Quote of the Day

“I’m telling you there is hope. I have seen it, but it does not come from the governments or corporations. It comes from the people.” 

— Greta Thunberg, Swedish environmental activist

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Share the news with your friends to make a bigger positive impact on the world and society together!

Stay impactful 💚

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