Temperature-adaptive radiative coating for all-season household thermal regulation

Kechao Tang, Kaichen Dong, Jiachen Li, Madeleine P. Gordon, Finnegan G. Reichertz, Hyungjin Kim, Yoonsoo Rho, Qingjun Wang, Chang Yu Lin, Costas P. Grigoropoulos, Ali Javey, Jeffrey J. Urban, Jie Yao, Ronnen Levinson, Junqiao Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Citations (Scopus)


The sky is a natural heat sink that has been extensively used for passive radiative cooling of households. A lot of focus has been on maximizing the radiative cooling power of roof coating in the hot daytime using static, cooling-optimized material properties. However, the resultant overcooling in cold night or winter times exacerbates the heating cost, especially in climates where heating dominates energy consumption. We approached thermal regulation from an all-season perspective by developing a mechanically flexible coating that adapts its thermal emittance to different ambient temperatures. The fabricated temperature-adaptive radiative coating (TARC) optimally absorbs the solar energy and automatically switches thermal emittance from 0.20 for ambient temperatures lower than 15°C to 0.90 for temperatures above 30°C, driven by a photonically amplified metal-insulator transition. Simulations show that this system outperforms existing roof coatings for energy saving in most climates, especially those with substantial seasonal variations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1504-1509
Number of pages6
Issue number6574
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec 17

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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