GreenTech

Balancing building temperatures sustainably with a device requiring no extra energy

The newly developed Zero-Energy Switchable Radiative Cooler (ZESRC) automatically switches modes with temperature changes, cooling under high temperatures, and heating under low temperatures. Credit: Journal of Photonics for Energy (2024). DOI: 10.1117/1.JPE.14.028501

Heating and cooling buildings currently accounts for a significant portion of global energy consumption, posing a challenge for reducing reliance on fossil fuels. By using less energy to heat and cool our buildings, we can take a big step towards sustainable building practices that help reduce or eliminate consumption of fossil fuels for heating and cooling.

In light of this challenge, a recent study from Wuhan University of Technology has introduced a practical innovation called the Zero-Energy Switchable Radiative Cooler (ZESRC). The ZESRC is a device designed to keep buildings at the right temperature without using any extra energy. It works by using a special method based on how different materials expand as they are heated. This straightforward principle allows it to easily switch between cooling and heating modes, to minimize energy use while maintaining comfortable indoor conditions.

The paper is published in the Journal of Photonics for Energy.

Field experiments demonstrate the ZESRC’s effectiveness across seasons, with notable temperature reductions of up to 7.1° C in summer and increases of up to 7.5° C in winter compared to outdoor conditions.

In addition to designing, building, and testing the ZESRC, the researchers also made a map to show how efficiently the ZESRC functions in different climates. Compared to other devices that only use solar heating or cooling, the ZESRC managed to reduce building energy consumption by 14.3%. That’s a big deal because energy conservation means we can significantly reduce our carbon footprint.

Going forward, the research team aims to optimize the ZESRC design for improved performance and test its application across different global climates and buildings. They hope that as a practical and energy-efficient solution for indoor climate control, the ZESRC could play a crucial role in helping to reach the global goal of bringing energy-related carbon dioxide emissions to net zero by 2050.

More information:
Changhao Chen et al, Zero-energy switchable radiative cooler for enhanced building energy efficiency, Journal of Photonics for Energy (2024). DOI: 10.1117/1.JPE.14.028501

Citation:
Balancing building temperatures sustainably with a device requiring no extra energy (2024, March 4)
retrieved 5 March 2024
from https://techxplore.com/news/2024-03-temperatures-sustainably-device-requiring-extra.html

This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no
part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Share with your friends!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get the latest technology news and updates

STRAIGHT TO YOUR INBOX

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

x  Powerful Protection for WordPress, from Shield Security
This Site Is Protected By
Shield Security