The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati researchers have developed smart window materials that can effectively control the amount of heat and light that pass through them in response to an applied voltage.
According to a study published in the journal Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, these intelligent window materials may help in the construction of successfully integrated climate control systems for buildings.
Buildings account for 36% of worldwide power use and 39% of energy-related carbon dioxide emissions on an annual basis, according to the United Nations Environment Programme.
Climate control systems are the key energy consumers in households since they depend on energy-intensive devices to maintain an acceptable indoor temperature and brightness.
As a consequence, the heating, cooling, and lighting loads on a building are major energy users.
To meet the Paris Climate Agreement’s goals, the energy efficiency of buildings — the volume of energy used by a house — will need to rise by 30% by 2030.
“There has been an increase of interest in sustainable architectural designs that maximize light and heat management in homes in recent years, and implementing smart windows is the first step toward accomplishing this aim,” said Debabrata Sikdar, an assistant professor at the university.
Historically, window designs were static, that is, they were predetermined for specific climatic circumstances.
On the other hand, evolving smart windows would dynamically adjust the amount of light and heat entering a building in response to external stimuli, thus conserving the building’s energy.
The development of intelligent windows capable of being calibrated to any environmental situation poses a challenge.
The IIT Guwahati team has developed intelligent window glasses made of noble metals and their comparatively inexpensive replacements that can dynamically adjust the strength of solar radiation released in response to changes in the weather/climate.