The glass technology that changed its transparency can be traced back to the 1980s. However, with the development of the concept, it has been practically applied in our time. Smart home. The so-called smart glass is based on the liquid crystal lattice, whose atoms change their positions under the action of electric current, so that the transparency of windows or internal glass partitions can be changed from the normal state in the open state to the completely impenetrable state in the closed state status.
In addition to smart glasses that can stop people who want to look backwards, they also have many other useful features. For example, they will not allow infrared and ultraviolet rays to enter the room, and will generally make you more comfortable in the room-especially in summer like this. This eliminates the need for curtains and blinds, and the air conditioning and lighting in such rooms will not need to be turned on so frequently, thereby saving electricity.
In the office, you can equip the business meeting room with smart glasses-after turning off the power, the insiders will feel bright enough, but they will be invisible to outsiders during the entire negotiation process. Usually, laminated glass-three-layer glass (in salons, banks, showrooms and studios) is traditionally used, and smart glass is gradually replacing it. Designers decorating office spaces often use zoning solutions based on smart glass: in such a “room”, work is much more comfortable than under normal circumstances. Generally, this glass has sufficient advantages.
The illuminance and temperature outside the windows are recorded by special sensors. Depending on their readings, the darkness of the glass will change. This can happen automatically or according to the degree of transparency set by the personnel. The power consumption of this system with power regulator (dimmer) does not exceed 7 watts per square meter of glass.
There are two main technologies for manufacturing smart glasses with power sources. The first is SPD, which means there is a special PDLC film whose particles are suspended in the liquid deposited on it. The film is placed between two glass plates or plastic sheets. This glass unit absorbs light when energized, thereby preventing light from penetrating the particles. Usually, glasses made using this technology are black, gray or blue, and the depth is controlled by the control panel. Usually, it takes a few seconds to change the operating mode of the smart glass.
LC is another less commonly used technique. The first glass based on it was obtained in 1984, but until 2003, when its inventor Steve Abadi put his product on the market under the registered trademark E-Glass, almost no one asked for it. In Innovative Glass Corporation, which develops and sells this product, Steve Abadi becomes chairman and chief executive officer.
The main feature of LC windows is to keep enough light indoors while keeping the outdoor dark. However, in this case, there are fairly conventional signs both inside and outside, because this type of glass is used both for making double-glazed windows and for indoor use. Indoors, among other things, smart glass can be used as the screen of the projector, which can reproduce the color of the image transmitted to the projector very clearly.
Although many smart glass manufacturers and companies focused on the development and implementation of smart glass-based solutions are represented in the United States and Europe, this market has just begun to emerge in Russia. This proposal first appeared in 2009. Today, one of the Russian companies specializing in this field is Sm-Glass, which has been manufacturing and assembling smart glass structures since 2011. Its partner is LUMEN MARKET, which represents the Russian Isoclima trademark (Italy).
Sm-Glass provides several products related to smart glasses technology. The first is Smart-film, as shown in the example above, which can be used to turn a meeting room into an impenetrable peeping eye. For this reason, a film with an adhesive layer must be applied to the glass partition from the inside-in the closed state, this solution will provide the required confidentiality. When it is opened, it will allow 80% or more of the sunlight to pass through. If handled carefully, this kind of film will last up to ten years. Sm-Glass provides a 5-year warranty for movies made in Italy and movies made in Korea for a period of 2 years. Smart film is usually used where double-layer smart glasses cannot be installed.
In the field of smart insulating glass installations, the company offers ISOPACK windows, whose transparency can be changed within a second. In addition to privacy, this type of window also has excellent sound insulation, minimizing street noise. Another advantage of such windows is their safety: the laminate used under the influence of high temperature and vacuum makes it difficult for them to enter the room. And their matte color when closed makes curtains unnecessary.
Finally, another product that Sm-Glass offers is brand new to Russia is electronic blinds. Essentially, they are hollow glass units with sectional switch technology. With the help of it, the smart glass can be partially closed, thereby making the desired area transparent. It is very practical and spectacular in appearance.
Electrochromic technology makes it possible to produce beaded (curved) smart glass, which provides a wide range of possibilities for the coloring of cars, yachts, business jets, etc. To be fair, it should be pointed out that this is not a cheap enjoyment at all. The two pieces of glass used for the front door can adjust the light transmittance, from transparent to extremely dark, plus installation, may cost the car owner about 350,000 rubles. However, for high-end or luxury cars worth millions of rubles, such as the Mercedes-Benz SLK, such a decision does not seem to be too wasteful.
Smart glass is a relatively young but constantly evolving field that works for innovators from all over the world. Every year, the international exhibition Glasstec will showcase the world’s novelty in this field. In this article, we will only mention two or three of the most impressive products in recent years.
The privacy protection smart glass was launched by Saint Gobain in 2016 and is a one-stop solution for creating privacy. In addition to extensive control possibilities (using remote control, built-in switches, timers, motion sensors, etc.), it also has a recording time from transparent to opaque: only one tenth of a second. Another product of the same manufacturer-SageGlass: This electrochromic glass is equipped with a bright zone function, which allows you to adjust heat transfer and adapt to light, so that the space can be darkened and brightened more effectively.
Spain’s Dream Glass Group (DGG) displayed its dream glass privacy glass. This kind of laminated glass can change color immediately when it is switched on and off. In addition, it can be darkened and brightened with squares and stripes, which provides ample opportunities for design and architectural solutions. We can see from the above that Russia has already provided similar products.