Heat-Active Auxetic Materials, developed at MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab



Researchers at MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab have recently developed an adaptable material that reacts in response to changes in heat. Known as Heat-Active Auxetics, the material functions in a similar manner to the pores on human skin, tightening and loosening based on exposure to various temperatures.


Compared to traditional auxetic materials, Heat-Active Auxetic Materials demonstrate autonomous performance, environmental response, easy customization, and greater possibilities for the design and fabrication of material properties. Auxetic materials paint a picture for the future of customizable foams, crash protection, packaging materials, clothing or various other applications that relay on material stretch and compression. Imagine if these materials could be designed to transform autonomously based on temperature, moisture or light with unique stretch or compression properties that are unheard of in today’s traditional materials.

Project Team: Athina Papadopoulou, Hannah Lienhard, Schendy Kernizan, Jared Laucks & Skylar Tibbits / Self-Assembly Lab, MIT

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