Leveraging Smart Paints to Save Energy and Stay Connected

Leveraging Smart Paints to Save Energy and Stay Connected

By Energy CIO Insights | Monday, March 04, 2019

Researchers have found a cost-effective way to turn ordinary walls into intelligent infrastructure-simply by rolling on a high-tech paint coat. The paint was discovered by a Carnegie Mellon University team and Disney Research–the entertainment conglomerate unit.

The paint can track gestures of the users and estimate the pose of the user's body if he or she is close. It can detect appliances location by capturing electromagnetic noise from the air. Paint allows users to control smart home functions, such as turning light on the wall, alerting a user elsewhere when an electric kettle is switched off or recognizing the gestures of users playing video games—all for about US$ 20 per square meter.

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The paint compound when mixed with titanium oxide, produces solar energy and moist air hydrogen fuel. Companies that use this simple addition of the new material can convert a brick wall into energy-harvesting and fuel-production real estate. Also, the paint doesn’t require a clean or filtered water supply. Any place with water vapor in the air can produce fuel even in remote areas far from water. Companies can use this product in areas such as Hong Kong that have a Mediterranean type of climate. Such invention holds the key to serving higher energy cost. This invention also holds the potential for serving developing and underdeveloped countries. The Paint will complement the solar panels of photovoltaic in an area where moisture is more.

A new high-tech paint that cools when exposed to the sun promises to cool urban buildings better. The Israeli company SolCold owns a technology that uses a double-layered paint coating to reduce temperatures by up to 10 degrees Celsius. There are two layers of paint—outer nano-filter, which blocks the rays of the sun, and the inner layer, which turns the heat on the surface to cool light. When applied to the roof of a building, paint can save up to 60 percent of the cost of air conditioning, with financial and environmental benefits.

Smart paint will redefine the smart city of the future. Smart paint will help the city regulate greenhouse effect, lowering energy bills and filter water. The future holds potential which requires government shift in its mindset.

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