Although we’ve seen materials that can “incognito” people or objects from heat detectors, they are usually only effective at one ambient temperature,media New Atlas reported. However, experimental new materials can be adapted to the user to operate on a wide range of scale. Thermal detection sensors, such as those found in night vision goggles, work by noting the temperature difference between the surface of an object and its surroundings. Therefore, if the temperature is the same, the object will still not be detected.
Although previously developed camouflage materials have been successfulin kept at a predetermined temperature, their adaptability is not very strong. That’s where new technology comes in. This is a flexible material developed by scientists at the University of California, San Diego, and consists of waxy phase-change materials and thermoelectric alloys sandwiched between elastomer slivers. It is powered by an integrated battery and controlled by the wearer via a wireless circuit board.
In response to the applied current, the alloy can change the temperature in less than a minute in the range of 10oC to 38oC (50oF to 100.5oF). This temperature change must be initiated manually by the user based on the currentobserved ambient temperature. Includes a phase-change substance to prevent the wearer from heating up with camouflage material. It absorbs heat by melting and absorbing temperatures above or equal to 30oC (86oF) (the surface temperature of the human skin). At temperatures below 30oC, it cures and acts as an insulating force.
The material has been incorporated into the armband. Eventually, the researchers hope to create a complete jacket, although before that the technology must be refined – currently, for example, the jacket weighs about 2 kg (4.5 pounds) and is about 5mm thick and can only work for an hour.
A paper on the study, led by Professor Chen Renkun, was recently published in the journal Advanced Functional Materials.