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Researchers have developed a new film for 3D printing that can be powered by electricity

wallpapers Tech 2021-01-07
A research team at the National University of Singapore (NUS) has used 3D printing technology to produce a new type of film that can effectively evaporate sweat from human skin, specifically for applications such as underarm pads, insoles and shoe linings. The researchers also showed how to use the water absorbed by the film to power wearable electronic devices such as watches and fitness trackers.
 
Sweat is mainly composed of water. When water evaporates from the surface of the skin, it lowers the temperature of the skin and makes us feel cool. "Tan Ruizheng, head of the research team of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the National University of China, explained. "In our new invention, we created a novel film that is very effective for evaporating sweat from the skin and then absorbing moisture from the sweat. effective. We have also taken the first step-by converting moisture from sweat into energy and using it to power small wearable devices. "
 
3D printing film
 
The researchers made the film with two hygroscopic chemicals (cobalt chloride and ethanolamine), which can attract and hold water molecules absorbed from the surrounding environment. According to the team, the hygroscopic 3D printing film can absorb more than 15 times the water, while the speed is six times that of similar traditional materials. As the water absorbs, the film changes from blue to purple and then to pink to indicate the amount of water absorption that has occurred. When exposed to sunlight, the film can quickly release the absorbed water and regenerate itself, which can be reused more than one hundred times.

 
 
To demonstrate the application of the film, the researchers integrated it into the polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) film commonly used in clothing, and made underarm pads, shoe linings and insoles. "The prototype of the shoe insole was created using 3D printing," said Professor Ding Jun, co-leader of the research team at the National University of National University. "The material used is a mixture of soft polymer and hard polymer, so it provides sufficient support and shock absorption capacity." Ding Jun added: "Using underarm pads, shoe linings and insoles embedded with moisture-absorbing membranes, sweat The moisture produced by evaporation is quickly absorbed to prevent sweat accumulation and provide a dry and cool microclimate for personal comfort."
 
Powering wearable electronic devices
 
Researchers will take the development one step further and find a way to make the most of the sweat used in the film. To this end, they designed and created a wearable energy harvesting device consisting of eight electrochemical cells (EC), in which they used a 3D printed membrane as an electrolyte. After absorbing moisture, each EC can generate about 0.57 volts, and the device generates enough energy to power the light-emitting diodes. The team believes that this proof-of-concept demonstration can pave the way for "huge economic potential" in the areas of functional clothing, footwear and wearable electronics.

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