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DOW Corning’s Smart Glazing Makes for Building Efficiency

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Architectural Glass in CaliforniaHundreds of thousands of building operators around the world struggle with building efficiency, there are alternatives to current single-pane window technology. The problem is, while single-pane windows are extremely inefficient, replacing them could be prohibitively expensive.

In the face of rising expenses, DOW Corning has devised a new window smart glazing that be be applied on top of existing glass. The new glazing, a silicon liquid crystal film, changes transparent glass to translucent when an electrical charge is applied. Depending on the season, excess sunlight can be blocked to reduce the need for air-conditioning, or sunlight can be let in to reduce the need for heating.

Elisabeth van den Berg, global business builder at Dow Corning’s business and technology incubator in Belgium, notes that air conditioning, “heating, and lighting account for 50% of the energy consumed in buildings. Smart Glazing has the potential to decrease by 30% the amount of energy consumed in a building, by being properly combined with an automated building management system.”

While replacement of all the glass in a building might be more than renovators are willing to consider, cheaper, automated, smart glazing would probably pay for itself in a short time with the energy savings realized.

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