Scientists have developed novel rubber like material nicknamed ‘thubber’ which has high thermal conductivity and elasticity.
It is an electrically insulating composite material that exhibits an unprecedented combination of metal-like thermal conductivity, elasticity similar to soft, biological tissue.
- Thubber consists of a soft elastomer with non-toxic, liquid metal microdroplets suspended within it. This semi-liquid state allows the metal to deform with the surrounding rubber at room temperature.
- When it is pre-stretched at room temperature, it stretches up to six times its initial length. During this phase, liquid metal microdroplets form into elongated pathways through which heat can easily travel through. At the same time, the material is electrically insulating.
- Potential applications: In developing wearable computing and soft robotics, industries like athletic wear and sports medicine and in advanced manufacturing, energy, and transportation etc.