A group of scientists from Stanford University in California have recently developed a nanowire coating for clothes that can generate heat and trap body heat better than normal clothing.
Lead researcher, Yi Cui and his team created lightweight, breathable mesh materials that are flexible enough to coat clothing. In comparison to the material of regular clothing, the nanowire material trapped body heat much more effectively. Since the coatings are made from conductive materials, they can also be warmed using an electricity source to boost the heat.
Cui noted almost half of the global energy consumption is used to heat buildings and homes, which is up to one third of the world’s total greenhouse gas emissions.
Scientists and policymakers have attempted to reduce the impact of indoor heating on the environment by improving insulation and construction materials to keep fuel-generated heat inside.
The research team calculated that these new thermal textiles could save approximately 1,000 kilowatt-hours per person annually, about as much electricity an average U.S. home consumes in one month.