Stay Cooler in Summer, Warmer in Winter

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- 5th Grade Teacher, Fairfax, VA read more

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Stay cooler in summer, warmer in winter.  New science fair project shows you how.

It is a very hot day.  You want to do all that you can to stay cool.  You want your family to be as comfortable as possible. What can you do?  There is a science fair project that helps you to determine whether the color of your clothes can help keep you cooler in summer and warmer in winter.  Once you learn the secret of this winning science fair project you will also know what color to paint your home, or what color car you should buy to get maximum comfort in very cold or very hot temperature conditions.

Try walking around without shoes on a really hot day and see for yourself whether it is hotter on the dark pavement or the light colored pavement.

A bunch of kids were playing outside on a very hot day.  One youngster was wearing a black T shirt, and another was wearing a white T shirt.  Using a temperature gun to determine the temperature of the two kids.
you may be surprised to learn that the white shirt was 10 degrees cooler than the black shirt.  You probably have already learned that the white pavement was easier on your feet than the black pavement.  Why is this so?

When the sun for example, shines on a black object, like a black T shirt or black pavement, the black color absorbs the heat making the T shirt or the pavement hotter.  When the same sun shines on a white T shirt or white colored pavement, the white color reflects the light and it does not get as hot as the black surface.

There are many different ways that you can set up a science fair project to prove your hypothesis that black will absorb heat and get hotter and that white will reflect heat and stay cooler.  For example you can paint a number of different colored little toy houses.  Then place a thermometer under each one of them. 
Either put them out in the sun, or shine a halogen light equally on each house and measure the temperature.  This is a really good idea for a cool and winning science fair project than anyone can do quite easily.  There are over 400 more ideas and experiments for science fair projects at




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