Press Esc to close
Wednesday 26 November 2014
News updated at 3:08 AM IST
Weather
Max: 29.1°C
Min : 17°C
In Bengaluru
Sunny day

Jumping droplets key to energy efficient products

Washington, Jan 2,PTI:

Microscopic water droplets jumping from one surface to another could hold the key to a wide array of more energy efficient products — from large solar panels to compact laptop computers, say scientists.

A team at Duke University has, in fact, developed a new way of producing thermal diodes, devices which regulate heat to preferentially flow in a certain direction, effectively creating a thermal conductor in the forward direction and an insulator in the reverse direction.

While thermal diodes can be made from solid materials, these solid-state diodes are not nearly as effective as “phase-change” thermal diodes that rely on vaporisation and condensation to transport heat, say the scientists.


These phase-change diodes can transfer over a hundred times more heat in the forward direction compared to the reverse, but with major limitations — they are dependent on gravity or restricted by a tubular configuration.

These limitations severely constrain the application of phase-change thermal diodes, for example, in mobile electronics which require orientation independence or solar panels which require a large surface area.

The Duke engineers believe they have figured out a way  to solve these limitations to existing thermal diodes by exploiting self-propelled water droplets, which can jump from a superhydrophobic (highly water-repellent) surface to a superhydrophilic (highly absorbent) surface, but not the other way around.

Go to Top

Photo Gallery
It is business as usual in Leopold Cafe on the eve of the anniversary ...

It is business as usual in Leopold Cafe on the eve of the anniversary ...

England's captain Alastair Cook (R) talks with his teammate Ravi Bopara...

England's captain Alastair Cook (R) talks with his teammate Ravi Bopara...

Models pose with a car during the inauguration of the Lamborghini showroom...

Models pose with a car during the inauguration of the Lamborghini showroom...

Women from the Delhi police force, undergo martial arts training...

Women from the Delhi police force, undergo martial arts training...

Indian tennis player Sania Mirza blows whistle to joins campaign...

Indian tennis player Sania Mirza blows whistle to joins campaign...

Children rights activist Baburaj, Good Sheperd High School headmistress ...

Children rights activist Baburaj, Good Sheperd High School headmistress ...

A Sun Bird sits on a branch of Jacaranda flower tree...

A Sun Bird sits on a branch of Jacaranda flower tree...

BJP MP'S meeting in Parliament house...

BJP MP'S meeting in Parliament house...

Bipasha Basu and Milind Soman at Pinkathon announcement

Bipasha Basu and Milind Soman at Pinkathon announcement

Modi with BJP leaders at an election rally in Jharkhand

Modi with BJP leaders at an election rally in Jharkhand

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523