Ancient Egyptian Blue Pigment a Boost for Energy Efficiency

October 15th 2018

RESEARCH by the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in the US has revealed how the ancient Egyptian Blue pigment can boost energy efficiency.

Julie Chao writes explains that the colour developed by Egyptians thousands of years ago has a modern-day application as the pigment can boost energy efficiency by cooling rooftops and walls, and could also enable solar generation of electricity via windows.

Egyptian blue, derived from calcium copper silicate, was routinely used on ancient depictions of gods and royalty. Previous studies have shown that when Egyptian blue absorbs visible light, it then emits light in the near-infrared range. Now a team led by researchers at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) has confirmed the pigment’s fluorescence can be 10 times stronger than previously thought.

This work was led by Paul Berdahl of the Heat Island Group as part of the Cool Walls project supported by the Electric Program Investment Charge program of the California Energy Commission.

Read the article in full here. Photo: Adobe Stock.

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