Climate control is no small consideration when constructing a home or office. The cost of actively cooling or heating a space is becoming more expensive as temperatures have become more extreme. That’s why more materials scientists and building engineers are looking for new ways climate can be controlled passively with better insulation. A new development from a team of students in the Netherlands may be a major asset maintaining comfortable temperatures in all different types of structures.
Insulation Using Liquid
The insulating facade system, dubbed Spong3D, was created through a collaboration of Delft University of Technology and Eindhoven University of Technology. Using 3D printing technology, researchers created a material with a complex, multi-cavity interior structure that allows for the flow of insulating liquid. The system insulates as many different materials can, but it also allows for storage and controlled distribution of heat.
Reduced Carbon Emission, Better Climate Control
As the interior liquid is moved throughout the Spong3D material, heat exchanges between a building’s interior and exterior can be efficiently controlled. The system is meant to accommodate for temperature fluctuations as seasons change and allows for more consistent regulation of comfortable ambient temperatures. The passive system would also help to reduce the need for heating and air conditioning, amounting to a reduced carbon footprint for every structure it’s incorporated into.
Catered To Architecture And Region
The Spong3D system is meant to be installed within interior walls like conventional insulation. Since it’s 3D printed, it can be created on-demand, making it a versatile option for a range of different architectural requirements, as well as the climate within a specific region. The material can be adjusted to allow for better ventilation in warmer areas or heat storage in colder regions.
More Research Needed
Though the material shows promise, there’s no projection for when it will be available for incorporation into new building projects. More research is needed to see how the material responds outside of a controlled testing environment.
What are your thoughts on Spong3D? Tell us in the comments.