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These ceramic tiles can save energy — thanks to ladybugs

These ceramic tiles can save energy — thanks to ladybugs

Scientists from the City University of Hong Kong have developed cooled ceramic tiles. The tiles mimic the whiteness of the Cyphochilus beetle to dissipate heat. This allows to reduce the use of air conditioners in hot countries, because the tiles keep the house cool.

Cold ceramic tiles can reject heat in two light sources, namely the solar range that comes from the sun, and the mid-infrared range. The tiles reflect a lot of light to reduce heating from sunlight, while emitting a lot of heat in the mid-infrared range, which helps cool the material.

Researchers in Hong Kong also added aluminum oxide to cooled ceramic tiles. This ensures that the tiles do not absorb sunlight easily, which also contributes to the cooling of the room.

The tiles can block 99.6 percent of the sun’s reflection. In the mid-infrared range, cold ceramic tiles emit convective thermal radiation, with a high heat emissivity of 96.5 percent. This way, almost no heat passes through the tiles.

Whiter than white

Researchers from the City University of Hong Kong reproduced the color of the Cyphochilus beetle, which has a characteristic known as bio-albedo, meaning the insect appears very white.

White paint is already widely used to cool homes, but the beetle’s vibrant white combined with ceramics could make homes cooler.

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