Madison (Interviewer): Hello! Welcome to “Mad Talk”.*smiles and waves to audience* Don’t you hate the feeling of your phone dying? How many times have you iPhone users had to ask to borrow someone’s charger? Wouldn’t it be fascinating for you to be able to charge your phone from your shirt? Or pants? Professor Zhong Lin Wang, a Regents professor at the Georgia Tech School of Material Science and Engineering, along with others, have recently developed a fabric that uses sun and wind to power devices. Today, she has taken the time to talk to us about her innovative project. Please give a round of applause for Professor Wang. *audience claps*
Welcome to the show! Thank you for coming! *shakes hands with one another*
Tia (Professor Wang): Hi, Madison! Thank you for having me!
Madison (Interviewer) : We are so interested in your research and the potential advancements it could hold! Can you tell us a little bit about your project?
Tia (Professor Wang): Of course! So this project and the idea of individually generating electricity from solar and wind energy has been in the works for a few years and the researchers from the Georgia Tech have taken it a step further by developing a fabric that encompasses these ideas. We constructed solar cells from polymer fibers and fiber-based triboelectric nanogenerators using a commercial textile machine to weave them together.
Madison (Interviewer): I see you brought some with you. Do you mind if I take a look at it?
Tia (Professor Wang): Oh, yes! Please do! This is our final product. *hands Madison a sample of the fabric* We’ve developed the fabric out of multiple strands of 320 micrometers of wool, and this allows the fabric to be very flexible, breathable and lightweight.
Madison (Interviewer): *as Madison feels the fabric* Wow. *to the audience* This is great! It’s so lightweight and soft to the touch. Some of you in the audience actually have a sample under your seat to feel!
Madison (Interviewer): Professor Wang, tell me, what do you think this fabric holds for the next generation?
Tia (Professor Wang): Well, first, our project proves that wearable technology is not only possible, but is happening here and now. It proves that the idea of energy production isn’t limited by our comfort. As we develop these new technologies for future generations, we are introducing a new era of energy production in which the consumers are not limited by their energy needs.
Madison (Interviewer): Interesting… Clearly, your research is breaking new grounds. Would you mind explaining to the audience the process of how the fabric gains and produces energy?
Tia (Professor Wang): Absolutely. Within the fabric, there are fiber-based nanogenerators, or fibers that transfer motion to usable energy, that allows the material to be electrically charged. For example, we took a 4 by 5 centimeter piece and attached it to a rod. We hung the rod outside of a moving car, so that the fabric could capture the wind. With this, we were able to produce a significant amount of power, enough to charge a commercial capacitor.
Madison (Interviewer): Is there anything else that the audience should know about your project and what it stands for?
Tia (Professor Wang): I’d just like to say that even though the technology we developed most likely won’t be in direct consumer use, it is still a big step forward in energy production. You probably won’t see designer t-shirts made from our newly developed fabric, but what I want you to understand is that the pure discovery of this fabric proves the development of energy production that is yet to come. Improvements of these fiber-generators are bound to be developed and could be put to use in future generations.
Madison (Interviewer): Now that we understand what you and your team accomplished and a little about how the technology works, I’d like to talk about the way in which I found out about you and your project. On September 13th, an article was published on Georgia Tech’s News Center, written by Josh Brown. Not only did this article introduce me to this project, but it did so in a way that made me invite you to my show today. It interested me. It persuaded me into believing what it was saying. I’m a strong believer in the idea that the way in which the science is presented is sometimes nearly or just as important as the science itself. In an effort to understand the ideas behind the way he wrote the article, I took the liberty to invite Mr. Brown. Please join me in welcoming Josh Brown.
Bruno (Writer): Hello! *waves to the audience*
Madison (Interviewer): Josh, welcome to “Mad Talk”. I’m sure you are acquainted with the works of Professor Wang. Can you tell us about the rhetorical decisions that you made to present the article in the way that you did?
Bruno (Writer): Of course. The most important part of the article was for me to accurately display the work of Professor Wang and the many others who worked on the project, while writing in a tone in which my audience would find captivating, and credible. A portion of the credibility was, for instance, to include direct quotes from Professor Wang in order for the audience to trust her authority and hence the article more.
Madison (Interviewer): Can you talk a little bit about the specific choices you made in your article to convey your purpose?
Bruno (Writer): The purpose of this article was to effectively articulate the success of Georgia Tech’s School of Material Science and Engineering. I chose to write on this because I felt that with an audience of people affiliated with Tech, who appreciate science and technology, Wang’s team and their findings would be wholeheartedly appreciated. In this article it was my goal to appeal to two rhetorical approaches: ethos and logos. Authority was a key aspect I used, but so were the logical explanations I included. Both of these made the audience trust my article.
Tia (Professor Wang): Personally, I believe that Josh did an excellent job displaying the progress that we have made with our new fabric. He effectively attributed credibility, or ethos, like the Hightower Chair foundation and the KAUST. So I would like to say Thank You Mr. Brown!
Madison (Interviewer): That’s all that we have for the interview section of our show for today. We will be back after a short break! *Actors converse and laugh*