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Potential for Passive Radiative Cooling by PDMS Selective Emitters

[+] Author Affiliations
Braden Czapla, Arvind Srinivasan, Qingtian Yin, Arvind Narayanaswamy

Columbia University, New York, NY

Paper No. HT2017-4853, pp. V001T09A015; 5 pages
  • ASME 2017 Heat Transfer Summer Conference
  • Volume 1: Aerospace Heat Transfer; Computational Heat Transfer; Education; Environmental Heat Transfer; Fire and Combustion Systems; Gas Turbine Heat Transfer; Heat Transfer in Electronic Equipment; Heat Transfer in Energy Systems
  • Bellevue, Washington, USA, July 9–12, 2017
  • Conference Sponsors: Heat Transfer Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5788-5
  • Copyright © 2017 by ASME


The scalability and implementation of selective emitters in passive radiative cooling applications are limited by the high fabrication costs due to the complexity of these structures. The usage of commercially available polymers in selective emitters holds potential in lowering the cost of radiative cooling solutions. In this work, we demonstrate that thin films of polydimethyl-siloxane (PDMS) on aluminum substrates act as radiative coolers by selectively emitting in the wavelength range of 8 μm to 13 μm, where the Earth’s atmosphere is highly transparent. We also show that our device can achieve passive cooling up to 12 °C below the ambient temperature under the night sky. This suggests that PDMS, especially due to its ease of deposition, may be a viable selective emitter in passive radiative cooling applications.

Copyright © 2017 by ASME



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