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Home > News > Nanotube-Coated Pot Boils Water FAST

July 9th, 2008

Nanotube-Coated Pot Boils Water FAST

Abstract:
It's about to get that much easier to create a tempest in a teapot. Conventional wisdom holds that a watched pot never boils and while "never" might be an exaggeration, most of us can agree that it takes longer than we'd like. However, researchers at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have discovered that by coating the inside of a pot with a microscopic layer of copper nanotubes—which under appropriate magnification make the surface of the cooking vessel look hairy—they can increase the efficiency of energy transfer from the pot to the water it holds by an order of magnitude.

In our imperfect world, where the burners of a range give off a huge proportion of their energy directly to the sorrounding air rather than to the cooking vessel they're supposed to be heating, the microscopically hirsute pots save cooking time, costs, and energy. "If the time taken to boil a given quantity of water is reduced by an order of magnitude, that should translate into significant cost savings," says Nikhil A. Koratkar, associate professor in the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering at Rensselaer, who led the project. However, there are safety concerns to using nanotubes in this way, and testing should continue before we find these little tubes coating our hot-pot coils.

Source:
ecogeek.org

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