What does this mean for Connecticut homeowners? In the future, people looking for replacement windows in CT may have even more options. With a thin film that will allow you to choose whether or not to let natural or heat-producing light into your home, there’s no telling what’s next on the horizon for window technology. From a U.S. Department of Energy Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory press release on August 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.
” The release goes on to discuss how this new window technology might be beneficial for homeowners: “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. The same window can also be switched to a dark mode, blocking both light and heat, or to a bright, fully transparent mode.”
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