December 5, 2023

The world is on track to surpass the previous decade as the hottest on record. Average temperatures hit record highs in early July, setting new benchmarks for hottest day and week, and the month looks likely to surpass June for another coveted award.

There is no denying that rising temperatures can have devastating effects on life on Earth, and we are increasingly seeing our built environment and “urban heat island” making the effects of extreme heat more difficult to deal with.

With this in mind, for the first time, scientists have used a robot capable of generating and absorbing heat, as well as sweat, to monitor the effects of high temperatures on humans and find ways to deal with health hazards.

ANDI, a thermal model from a tech company Thermometry It has been used earlier in laboratories to test the effectiveness and abrasion resistance of sportswear. Now, researchers at Arizona State University (ASU) have taken the roughly half-million-dollar dummy outdoors, exposing it to the intense heat currently felt across the state and much of the United States.

ANDI mimics the body’s thermal function and can be adjusted for different age, fitness levels or health conditions that affect people’s ability to tolerate heat. It’s a safer way to collect data and assess heat stress limits without putting humans at risk.

World's first thermal model of outdoor breathing, sweating and walking will help researchers better understand how our bodies are affected by heat stress
World’s first thermal model of outdoor breathing, sweating and walking will help researchers better understand how our bodies are affected by heat stress

Christopher Goulet/Arizona State University

What’s more, “his” torso has 35 individually controlled temperature sensors, can breathe through an external tank that measures hot air exchange, and has pores that “sweat” when the dummy’s cooling system kicks in to meet temperature challenges.

ANDI’s cooling system has channels for circulating cooling water, allowing him to withstand temperatures up to 140 °F (60 °C), while measuring solar radiation from the sun, infrared radiation from the ground, and convective heat from the surrounding air.

Scientists can also monitor how human movement, such as walking, exacerbates heat risk and how it affects organ function.

ANDI's sensors can be individually controlled and adjusted to mimic di
ANDI’s sensors can be individually controlled

Christopher Goulet/Arizona State University

Nearly 62,000 people all of europe perishes Last year due to the extreme heat. Much of the northern hemisphere is under siege again, with wildfires raising health risks.

The scientists hope that the data gathered by using ANDI on the frontlines will help understand the physiology of heat stress, provide better risk guidance for a broad range of populations and settings, and may lead to the emergence of clothing or other personal protective equipment to mitigate the health impacts of what appears to be the new normal.

To see how ANDI moves and mimics the way humans generate heat, watch this video from the Thermetrics library.

Thermetrics Newton Sweating Thermal Model Walks on Elliptical

source: Arizona State University