- The paint reflects 98.1% of the solar radiation and at the same time emits infrared heat.
- How soon until it is on the shelves of a large retailer?
- The paint is intended to be used on roofs, including shingles and metal roofs.
The lead researcher behind the whitest paint ever made says the highly reflective paint is well on its way to being sold to the general public who could one day cool their homes simply by painting their roofs.
News about the color, certified by the Guinness Book of Records, has caused a sensation around the world. It should one day reduce or eliminate the need for air conditioning, according to the researchers who developed it.
In fact, the color reflects 98.1% of the sun’s rays and at the same time gives off infrared heat.
Since the paint absorbs less heat from the sun than it gives off, a surface coated with this paint is cooled below the ambient temperature without consuming electricity.
The researchers hope that the paint will be available from a major retailer in the future.
“The paint is not yet on the market,” Xiulin Ruan, the project’s lead researcher, told USA TODAY on Thursday. “We are currently working with a large company to commercialize the paint and hopefully it will be out in a few years.”
More:Scientists have developed the whitest color in the world. It could eliminate the need for air conditioning.
And once it’s on the market, can homeowners paint shingles or metal roofs with the paint?
“Yes, the paint is meant to be used on roofs, including shingles and metal roofs,” said Ruan. “It can be used on other infrastructures that use commercial colors.”
The color should be a blessing in both cool and warm climates, he added.
“From an energy saving point of view, it will be more useful in warm climates as more cooling is needed. On the other hand, it can be used in both warm and cold climates to reverse the global warming trend.
“For example, using it in the Arctic and Antarctic areas (e.g. on their roofs) should help cool the areas and prevent the glaciers from melting,” said Ruan.
What is new about this paint is that the white paint available on the market tends to get warmer than cooler: paints on the market that repel heat only reflect 80 to 90% of the sunlight and cannot make surfaces cooler than their surroundings.
Two properties make this paint ultra white, according to Purdue University: a very high concentration of a chemical compound called barium sulfate – which is also used in photo paper and cosmetics – and different particle sizes of barium sulfate in the paint, Purdue scientists said.
This Purdue white paint is the result of research dating back to the 1970s to develop radiant cooling paint as a viable alternative to traditional air conditioning, according to a university press release.