Stanford scientists develop new form of solar cooling that works when the sun shines

SAGE is all about keeping buildings cool. So we’re always excited about other technologies that tackle the challenge of keeping buildings energy efficient under the relentless power of the sun.

The latest discovery comes from a Stanford team of scientists who have designed an entirely new form of cooling panel that works even when the sun is shining.They claim that such a panel could vastly improve the daylight cooling of buildings, cars and other structures by radiating sunlight back into the chilly vacuum of space.

“People usually see space as a source of heat from the sun, but away from the sun outer space is really a cold, cold place,” explained Shanhui Fan, a professor of electrical engineering and the paper’s senior author. “We’ve developed a new type of structure that reflects the vast majority of sunlight, while at the same time it sends heat into that coldness, which cools manmade structures even in the daytime.”

The breakthrough is an effective broadband mirror for solar light – it reflects most of the sunlight. It also emits thermal radiation very efficiently within the crucial wavelength range needed to escape Earth’s atmosphere.

Read about how it works here: 

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600450 Stanford scientists develop new form of solar cooling that works when the sun shines
Date: 22 April 2015

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