The announced advantages are many.
- A better thermal regulation, thus better comfort:
- The idea is to lighten the glass. Clearer it is more it lets the sunlight pass through and heat the room. This configuration is applied for the winter.
- The principle is to darken the glass. More the glass is dark more it absorbs the natural light (and its heat), preventing it to pass through the glass and to enter the room. This configuration is applied for the summer. And avoids the use of low emissivity glazing or even of blinds and shutters.
- Free the creativity of architects since the thermal constraints are reduced.
- Learn more about the thermal comfort.
- Dynamic glazings limit the energy requirements to heat or cool. Smart glasses go in the direction of new thermal regulations and positive-energy building which aim is to use a bioclimatic design and a marginal non renewable energy.
- Improve the quality of natural lighting. A clearer view because the glazing adjusts to the brightness and decreases the backlights and the dazzle. Improve the visual comfort.
- A function of place privatisation for the opacifying glazings (bathroom, meeting room, risk sites, show windows, etc.).
- You can control the degree of shade, its settings and its automatisation by tablets, wall switches or even by voice commands thanks to a centralised building management system!
- The system is maintenance free for the thermo-chromic glasses.
How long does it take to change its shade? The manufacturer Saint Gobain with its SageGlass solution indicates a reactivity period of few seconds. The thermo-chromic glasses have a longer period.
The disadvantages of dynamic glazings:
- The high price. The prices per m2 excluding the installation are from £500 to £700 per m2.
- Saint Gobain indicates that the process is more efficient to cool in summer than the use of shutters. The effect is limited if the temperature in the shade is higher than the comfort room temperature.
- The overweight.
Concerning the building and the housing, the supports and the applications are many: traditional window frames, veranda, windowpanes, façades, glass roofs, …
It is now technically possible to produce glass panels over 3 meters large.
The main applications are: offices, public buildings (schools, libraries …), restaurants and luxury hotels, residential (veranda, windowpanes, housings with lots of windows).