The French have come up with a new very interesting new invention – the Z.E.F. Table which promises to absorb and release heat without using any electricity. The initials Z.E.F. suggest just that – Zero-Energy Furniture and once you take a look at this out-of-the-ordinary table, you realize that it basically functions like a “thermal sponge”, as one of its creators called it.
The table is a product of the collaboration between designer Jean-Sébastien Lagrange and his friend, engineer Raphael Menard. Their idea came from a desire to do something useful for the environment, which constantly has to face the harmful effects of climate change. A method to provide some relief to its effects is to cut down on energy use. The table not only has a very nice design but it also has technology that could help its user save money on both heating bills and on air conditioning costs by 60 percent and 30 percent, respectively, according to Raphael Menard.
The table contains anodized aluminum meant to enhance the airflow and enable heat exchange. This aluminum represents the bottom, while the oak table is placed on top. Between them there is a wax-like substance whose role is to absorb heat when the room temperature is 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit or more, thus providing a cool environment in the room, and release that heat once the temperature goes below 71 degrees. The aluminum is the one that helps it capture the heat. Therefore, by using phase-changing materials, the table is able to create a very comfortable atmosphere as far as the room-temperature is concerned. In other words, when you decide to invite many friends for dinner, you shouldn’t worry about the room getting too hot – the table will take care of absorbing the heat and release it when it is needed.
Even if Menard and Lagrange have only designed this table so far, they are thinking of implementing the technology in other pieces of furniture as well. It is not hard to imagine wall panels, wardrobes and even chairs that can do the same thing. Homes, hospitals, restaurants and many other environments can benefit greatly from this invention in the not-very-distant future.
For now, the table is not available for purchase, but its creators hope to sell their first copies towards the end of the year.
Image Source: businessinsider