A new paint, known as the lightest paint in the world, contains no pigments, allowing it to maintain stable temperatures inside buildings.
According to the University of Central Florida scientists behind the innovative paint, the plasmonic paint is designed to keep the heat in cooler regions and out in the warmer regions of the world than traditional paint on buildings.
A new study published in the peer-viewed journal ScienceAdvances reports that rather than pigment, the paint uses "nanoscale structural arrangements of aluminum and aluminum oxide" to create color.
How does the 'lightest paint in the world' work?
Commercial paints have pigments that rely on the molecule's light absorption to make their colors. When light is not absorbed is reflected back and seen by the human eye as color.
The pigment-less paint relies on light absorption as well as reflection and scattering of the geometric arrangement of its nanostructures to create a wide spectrum of colors.
While 1,000 pounds of traditional paint would be needed to paint a Boeing 747, only three pounds of plasmonic paint could get the job done, making it the lightest paint in the world, according to InterestingEngineering.
Researchers noted that another benefit of the new paint is that it's more environmentally friendly than pigmented paint because it only contains metal and its oxides.
Plasmonic paint also absorbs less heat. During testing, it kept surfaces more relaxed by up to 30 degrees Fahrenheit, compared to traditional paints, according to the study.
The temperature difference could lead to a reduced need for air conditioning inside a building, reducing long-term power consumption and carbon emissions.