materials science and engineering

A new way to store solar heat - Material could harvest sunlight by day, release heat on demand hours or days later.

A new way to store solar heat - Material could harvest sunlight by day, release heat on demand hours or days later.

Imagine if your clothing could, on demand, release just enough heat to keep you warm and cozy, allowing you to dial back on your thermostat settings and stay comfortable in a cooler room. Or, picture a car windshield that stores the sun’s energy and then releases it as a burst of heat to melt away a layer of ice.  ccording to a team of researchers at MIT, both scenarios may be possible before long.

Harnessing the energy of small bending motions

Harnessing the energy of small bending motions

For many applications such as biomedical, mechanical, or environmental monitoring devices, harnessing the energy of small motions could provide a small but virtually unlimited power supply. While a number of approaches have been attempted, researchers at MIT have now developed a completely new method based on electrochemical principles, which could be capable of harvesting energy from a broader range of natural motions and activities, including walking.