Raising the IQ of smart windows: Embedded nanocrystals provide selective control over visible light and heat-producing near-infrared light

Raising the IQ of smart windows: Embedded nanocrystals provide selective control over visible light and heat-producing near-infrared light

Researchers have designed a new material to make smart windows even smarter. The material is a thin coating of nanocrystals embedded in glass that can dynamically modify sunlight as it passes through a window. Unlike existing technologies, the coating provides selective control over visible light and heat-producing near-infrared light, so windows can maximize both energy savings and occupant comfort in a wide range of climates.

via ScienceDaily: Top Science News:

Aug. 14, 2013 — Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have designed a new material to make smart windows even smarter. The material is a thin coating of nanocrystals embedded in glass that can dynamically modify sunlight as it passes through a window. Unlike existing technologies, the coating provides selective control over visible light and heat-producing near-infrared (NIR) light, so windows can maximize both energy savings and occupant comfort in a wide range of climates.”In the US, we spend about a quarter of our total energy on lighting, heating and cooling our buildings,” says Delia Milliron, a chemist at Berkeley Lab’s Molecular Foundry who led this research. “When used as a window coating, our new material can have a major impact on building energy efficiency.”Milliron is corresponding author on a paper describing the results the journal Nature. The paper is titled, “Tunable near-infrared and visible light transmittance in nanocrystal-in-glass composites,” co-authored by Anna Llordés, Guillermo Garcia, and Jaume Gazquez.Milliron’s research group is already well known for their smart-window technology that blocks NIR without blocking visible light. The technology hinges on an electrochromic effect, where a small jolt of electricity switches the material between NIR-transmitting and NIR-blocking states. This new work takes their approach to the next level by providing independent control over both visible and NIR light. The innovation was recently recognized with a 2013 R&D 100 Award and the researchers are in the early stages of commercializing their technology.Independent control over NIR light means that occupants can have natural lighting indoors without unwanted thermal gain, reducing the need for both air-conditioning and artificial lighting. …

For more info: Raising the IQ of smart windows: Embedded nanocrystals provide selective control over visible light and heat-producing near-infrared light

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Raising the IQ of smart windows: Embedded nanocrystals provide selective control over visible light and heat-producing near-infrared light

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