Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Tiny lightweight plastic fabric puffs up near body warmth temp creating warm parkas from an ounce of fabric

compressed polymer foam has microblobs of a compound with a melt or bp near 70 to 90 degrees thus on wearing the fabric suddenly goes super insulative awesome new survival parkas plus surfgear are the result
  (+3, -7)
(+3, -7)
  [vote for,

there I was laying on a sheet of plastic thinking, ah if only this sheet of plastic had tiny blobs of halocarbon droplets that would puff to 1000 times their volume going from the liquid to gas form from my body warmth (note 18 g of water makes 22.4 liters of gas; CFCs have higher amu though) With a melting or boiling point around 70 to 90 degrees each little droplet of fluid could inflate a microbag creating a comfy insulating pad when it detected a warm human was laying on it. I thought how wonderful a sleeping mattress that puffed only on contact with body warmth would be as the travel volume would be tiny; I also thought how wonderful a swimwear item that puffed on contact to provide warmth

Well I looked at the CRC handbook; there are a number of fluids with melt or bp near 30C thus the idea is possible an iodopropane or a branched CFC contained at a compressed polymer foam would do it, the thing is that the vapor pressure that is the rate of puffing up is rather moderate; I was thinking you have this little ounce of miracle fabric to replace the giant parka It wakes a great survival fabric plus compared with a PTFE membrane parka it uses much less Halocarbons

Anyway I wess less than wowed with the vapor pressures I saw of compounds that melt or have bp 80 or 90 If it works though it revolutionizes warmth fabrics as well as surfwear

beanangel, Mar 08 2010


       I would call this the *microblob* parka.
xandram, Mar 08 2010


       how about a cold pour liquid styrofoam, less than an ounce when dry and body tight
Arcanus, Mar 08 2010

       //(note 18 g of water makes 22.4 liters of gas//   

       Well, that's an interesting claim, but 1 mole of water at STP would be..well, wet ice, wouldn't it?   

       sp. "litres"
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Mar 08 2010

       BEANY BABY!!!!!!!!!! Welcome back. I missed you.   

       You've clearly been away at Capitalization School, and I can say that the results look good on you.   

       As for the idea, I'm thinking feedback:   

       Weather gets cold.
Outer layers recondense, collapsing.
Skin is less well insulated.
Skin gets colder.
Jacket gets colder.
Further insulating layers condense and collapse.
Skin is less well insulated.
Skin gets colder.
Jacket gets colder.
Further insulating layers condense and collapse.

       What you want is one of those special substances which remains liquid until cooled below a certain temperature, and then expandulates into a gas.   

       But what the hell, have a [+] for the sheer beaniness of it.
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 08 2010

       Hello again, [beanangel]. We take it that the voices in your head have been particularly loud and insistent today ?
8th of 7, Mar 08 2010

       [+] sortof bass-ackwards but much less magical than [MB]'s "special substances"... downside (get it? *down* side... oh nevermind) is your closet could explode in a heat wave.
FlyingToaster, Mar 08 2010

       I'm not sure if this idea is fantastic or ridiculous. I'm tending towards the latter at the moment ...
Mrlemonjelly, Mar 08 2010

       You are right, MB, it's the halfbakery's very own version of a halfbaked Beanie Baby. Whhoowhoo!
blissmiss, Mar 09 2010

       [Blissmiss] are you back on the little blue ones?
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 09 2010

       only I think you should be.
MaxwellBuchanan, Mar 09 2010

       Unless I'm missing something, this idea will do the exact opposite of the claims. The boiling and condensing fluid will quickly and efficiently carry away body heat. As a wetsuit I think this would actually be a death trap. While swimming the fluid on the fabric on the top surfaces of the body would boil and then condense on the top surface exposed to the water, drip back down to contact the body and repeat. It is a heat pipe suit. That actually poses an interesting other use for this "fabric", cool suits.
MisterQED, Mar 09 2010

       Are you picking on moi again?
blissmiss, Mar 09 2010

       Why even have the bubbles deflate at all? Wouldn't micro pockets of air, or better yet hardened plastic vacuum pockets be a better insulter? I just can't see what the advantage of having heat activated insulation.
Postscript, Mar 09 2010

       Let me echo some of the other sentiments here [beanangel] - welcome back, we've missed you!   

       Whenever I lay myself out on sheets of plastic, I too find that as a mediator between myself and another surface, the plastic offers little in terms of give, should that other surface be a hard unyielding one, along with (after some time) the (not always but) usually less than pleasant sensation of slipperyness as my natural bodily secretions are captured and held in place by the non-permeable plastic. As a consequence, I find myself lying on plastic less and less these days.   

       But what [MaxwellB] said is a good point - what we'd really want (if insulation is the goal) is something that puffed when it got cold, not the other way around. If we're looking at body-aware fabrics that can be packed away in less space. I think we need more than a temperature cue, otherwise you might find your furniture has exploded having neatly folded your garments away prior to a heatwave.
zen_tom, Mar 09 2010

       Jumping off from MB's idea, maybe a substance that freezes into large, hollow crystals would be better suited to this purpose.
nick_n_uit, Mar 09 2010

       The idea is a compressible material which when expanded traps an insulating layer of gases? Down is pretty hard to beat in this problem space.   

       Suggested shorter title: Puff parka   

       // It is a heat pipe suit. // Yes, that occurred to me too. I wonder if it applies though if the individual trapped vapour bubbles are small enough that none touch both the body and the outer layer.   

       I have a suggestion for a filler material: popcorn. Of course, it would require more than just body heat to activate, but less chance of your backpack exploding on a hot day.   

       // compared with a PTFE membrane parka it uses much less Halocarbons // Aren't they made from recycled bottles?   

       // a better insulter? // Where is Unabubba these days, anyway?
BunsenHoneydew, Mar 19 2010

       UnaBubba imploded and can only be found in the wayback machine.   

       In the "2 + 2 = 4 except when it doesn't" category, this could be vaguely combined with that 3d inkjet idea of yours to make small flat'ish discs that rolled themselves into air-filled spheres when cooled.
FlyingToaster, Mar 19 2010


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