MIT students develop Wristify, a wearable cooling device
In an attempt to keep our houses and workplaces cool during the sweltering summers, we often end up consuming humongous amount of electricity to keep air conditioners up and running. This energy consumption not just proves to be hefty on the pocket, but also is hazardous to Mother Nature. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way to keep ourselves cool without utilizing a huge amount of energy? Well, now it is possible with the “Wristify”, a prototype wearable device that uses the Peltier effect to reduce your body temperature. Developed by four engineering students at MIT , Wristify is a thermoelectric bracelet that is capable of regulating the temperature of the person wearing it by subjecting their skin to alternating pulses of hot or cold, depending on what they needs at that point in time.
This revolutionary device running on a lithium-ion battery make one feel cooler by reducing the temperature of the wrist by a few fractions of a degree per second for a couple seconds at a time. Within a few minutes you will feel your entire body cool by a couple of degrees. Sam Shames, an MIT senior along with his co-inventors–Mike Gibson, a second-year Ph.D. student; David Cohen-Tanugi, a fourth-year Ph.D. student, and Matt Smith, a postdoctoral researcher is still finding ways to refine the cycles used to deliver that temperature change, but as of now, the team says that the most effective method is to cool the wrist by 0.4 degrees Celsius per second for five seconds, and then turn off for 10 seconds.
What makes the Wristify stand out is the fact that it not just provides a more personalized approach to temperature control, but also saves those millions of watts that are used to raise or lower the temperature of an entire building. This exceptional device recently won first place at this year’s MADMEC, an annual competition conducted by the school’s Materials Science and Engineering program. The team plans to utilize the $10,000 prize to further develop Wristify’s.