A team at Otherlab always try to do something novel. This time, by using ARPA-E funding, they have developed thermally adaptive material. Scientists named this material as self-poofing fabric. The fabric has the ability to dynamically change its insulation in response to temperature.
This self-poofing fabric also acts as the heat insulating material. When the fabric warms out, it traps more air and maintains the cold temperature.
Scientists said, “Our fabrics change shape, increase their thickness and insulation in response to the cold. Our goal is to make apparel with survivor thermal comfort, both indoors and outdoor.”
The fabric is actually made from commodity materials and works completely passive. It does not require any power source, wiring, and controls. It only consists of a combination of common synthetic fibers that has different thermal expansion characteristics.
Within a single minute, the fabric transforms itself from completely flat to completely poofed. At minimum poof, the fabric insulates you about as well as a heavy t-shirt. And at maximum poof, it’s equivalent to heavy outdoor gear, nearly tripling its insulating ability in response to a temperature drop of 15 °C.
According to scientists, this fabric has the potential to keep the wearer comfortable over a range of temperatures. In addition, this technology can make a commute, a hike, or travel more comfortable.
Its mechanism is based on a physical response to temperature. So, it does not require any input from the user to control the system.