Polar Bear Insulation Inspiration

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 7,183
    Researchers are studying polar bear fur to understand why they have such great insulating power.

    A team of scientists are looking at why polar bear hair is a much more successful insulator than what we humans have developed for housing.  The team of international researchers is saying that it’s the hair on polar bear, which reflect infrared light, that give the bear such great insulating power.  Through computer models, they found that repeated backscattering of infrared light between radiation shields, i.e. the hairs, “could be the chief mechanism for the thermal insulation advantages of fur.”  It had previously been assumed it was due to thermal conduction.  Just to give you picture, we need at least 60 cm of rockwool or glasswool to do basically what two inches of hair does for the polar bear.  The scientists hope their work will one day result in better insulation technology for we humans.