Here's a new way to beat the heat in summers. In a breakthrough discovery, a researcher at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab has developed a glass paint that could keep metal roofs and other structures cool even in sunlight. This environmentally-friendly paint bounces sunlight off metal surfaces and keeps them cool and durable.
Jason J. Benkoski said, "Most paints people used on their cars or homes were based on polymers that degraded due to the ultraviolet light rays of the sun. I wanted to move away from traditional polymer coatings to inorganic glass ones." To address that aspect in a new coating, the researcher started with silica, one of the most abundant materials in the earth's crust.
Benkoski modified one version of it, potassium silicate, that normally dissolves in water. This tweak transformed the compound so that when it is sprayed onto a surface and dries, it becomes water resistant. This new paint is almost completely inorganic, which should make it last far longer than paints containing organic compounds. Benkoski said, "My paint is also designed to expand and contract on metal surfaces to prevent cracking. It was not uncommon for aluminum to heat up to 70 degrees Fahrenheit above ambient temperature in direct sunlight. Materials needed to make the coating were abundant and inexpensive."