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Scientists engineer silk that keeps skin cooler than cotton

Rsearchers have created silk fabric designed to keep your skin 12.5C cooler than cotton in the hottest weather, reports New Scientist. In an attempt to reduce the consumption of energy to keep us cool, scientists have worked on a material that can naturally keep us cooler.
Jia Zhu at Nanjing University in China and Shanhui Fan at Stanford University worked to engineer a kind of silk that would reflect heat, mainly the infrared and the visible wavelengths. The fabric reflects 95% of the heat that strikes it, by embedded fibers from aluminum oxide nanoparticles. When bathed in sunlight, the material stayed 3.5C cooler than the surrounding air.
Researchers also discovered that when draped over surface that stimulates skin, the skin remained 8C cooler than other kinds of silk, while keeping the skin 12.5C cooler than cotton. The experiment was also tested on a collared long-sleeved shirt from the new silk and asked to be worn around under the sun in 37C. Infrared images discovered that the shirt stayed cool. According to Zhu, ““Wearing the engineered silk on a hot day under sunlight, one feels much cooler than wearing normal textiles such as cotton.”
The engineered silk is comfortable to wear, breathable, can be washed and dried. The material is cost-effective and can be thus, produced in mass numbers. The fabric is designed people cool outdoors under the sun, and is not made to be worn indoors at home.

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