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Fashion: Material
Temperature Clothing   (+5, -2)  [vote for, against]
A linen that contracts when hot, expands when cold.

A clothing that adjusts to the ambient temperature is something everyone must've contemplated of since the caveman. How to do this was the main mystery, and still is the main mystery (since what I am writing is still nonsense). For such a clothing, the main features I was looking for were: 1. Expands with cold, contracts with heat

2. Must not contain fluids or electricity

3. Must be easy to process (washable etc.)

4. Must be easy to manufacture

5. Must have a fair price

6. Must be isotropic (free of direction)

7. Must be reversible

So, my scheme is this: When a wire expands, its length increases. This linen will have nanostrings of high thermal expansion coefficient. On the strings there will be loops attached, like making wireframe of a sphere on the cable (nanostrings). The loops will be of another material that does not have a large expansion coefficient. So, when the cable extends, the wireframe will collapse and become flat. Then, the string will not occupy as much space, and thus the thickness of the linen will decrease. An important point is that, this fabric must be made up of millions of such nanostrings attached to each other with 'links'. The links are hollow tubes into which the nanostrings can expand. As one end the nanostring is fixed and the other is in this pipe, it expands only in one direction. One end of the loops are also tied to the tubing. If the manufacturing process is repetitive, it could eventually be inexpensive.

Ok, I'm ready for the buns. Thank you.
-- xkuntay, Jan 22 2009

The first sweater made with this linen should have the Star Trek symbol on it.
-- xkuntay, Jan 23 2009

Now what's the matter [U-B]? I checked it like 5 times in M-W, MS Word, Longman etc. and got it wrong again?! Geeez.. ok thanks
-- xkuntay, Jan 23 2009

Does sp. get a fishbone btw? If so, I should really bless my middle school literature teacher! She only took 2 points off!
-- xkuntay, Jan 23 2009

UB, huh, you are right. I'll do that. I'll keep your comment though, for lesson.
-- xkuntay, Jan 23 2009

I don't understand all the imperatives ("Must be reversible", "Must have a fair price"). The more conditions you place on it, the more WIBNI it sounds.

Also, why contract in heat and expand in cold? Is that supposed to be interfiber spacing? If it gets hot enough, do your clothes suffocate you?

How about clothes with little holes that open in the heat to let air in? Clothes that expand in heat not only become looser, but will make it look like you're melting.
-- phoenix, Jan 23 2009

This sounds horrendously expensive to manufacture.

It's still not 100% clear if you are talking about fibres expanding and contracting in length or thickness. The latter would make hot=contract, cold=expand sensible, as [phoenix] points out, allowing greater or lesser passage of air through the weave. You can probably find something in nature to mimic, if not to use directly.

The entertainment value of lengthwise thermotropic fibres would be far greater. I would love a single suit that goes from a skin tight set of long-johns in the Arctic winter to a burnous in the Arabian desert.
-- BunsenHoneydew, Jan 23 2009

We already wear such things the hair on our arms sticks out when we get cold "goosebumps" birds fluff it out in the cold too.
-- MercuryNotMars, Jan 23 2009

calculations: thermal coef. for rubber = 0.0015 = %0.15

if length = 1000 , thickness = 0.5

temperature change of 10 K

length increase = 1000 * 0.0015 * 10 = 15 units

15 + d = 3.14 * d / 2 ; d = 26

height of loop = 26 / 2 = 13

20 bundled together

total thickness = 10

every 10 K the thickness of the fiber doubles.
-- xkuntay, Jan 24 2009

okay, in order: [phoenix] Excuse, me too green to know what WIBNI is. It doesn't become looser (or isn't supposed to) when heated. To define the variables: Contract = Get thinner, Expand = Get thicker. Hole thing is cool. Thought of that before. Could use small rigid rings. But then the linen needs to be single piece, and that would be like wearing a tableclothe or something.

[BunsenHoneydew] Computers were expensive once. Now you can pick one up from the junkyard for free. I just throw the bone, it's the manufacturers' job to work out the nuts and bolts. And again, please refer to above definition.

[MercuryNotMars] UB told it.

[UB] sp. warm
-- xkuntay, Jan 24 2009

[MercuryNotMars] How shortsighted I was, didn't realize your hint! You are a genius! Hair! That was the right answer. You just fixed the problem. We can now update the product to Temperature Clothing 2 as follows:

Concentric tubes, the inner one has a high thermal expansion while the outer one has a low one. There are holes on the outer tube and there are 'hairs' sticking out which are fixed on the inner tube. As the inner tube lengthens, the hairs are dragged and of course stick out. Sherlock Holmes! You can actually increase the width of the fiber 1000% with 10K change. That is huge! Think, you go to the freezer section of the supermarket and all of a sudden your shirt makes you look like Arnold.
-- xkuntay, Jan 25 2009

feathering out like the magician's wand turns into the boquette? letting air flow when hot and and keeping it when it is cool?
-- MercuryNotMars, Jan 25 2009

-- 2 fries shy of a happy meal, Jan 25 2009

[MNM] Yeah. And there can also be a sensor on your skin that tells when your own hair sticks out, and mimics that on the clothing. So, say you have a report late and you suddenly hear your boss' voice behind you, you feather up.
-- xkuntay, Jan 25 2009

random, halfbakery