FAQ: What Is Smart Glass, and Do I Really Need It?

January 2, 2020

Smart phones. Smart TVs. Smart appliances. Even glass is smart these days. But what exactly is smart glass, and is this something you need? Your architectural window suppliers in Glenwood Springs, CO have answers.

What is smart glass?

Also known as switchable glass, smart glass is a method of glazing that allows alteration of the appearance of the glass as needed. It can be transparent, or it can change to translucent, effectively blocking the view through the glass.

How does smart glass work?

To create smart glass, technicians dissolve liquid crystals and solidify them through the curing process of the polymer. As the polymer changes from a liquid to a solid state, the crystals form droplets within the polymer. The conditions of the curing are altered based on the desired final properties of the smart window. Technicians then place the polymer and crystal mix between layers of plastic, which include a conductive material. The final sandwich structure forms a capacitor.

To activate the smart window, technicians attach a low-voltage power supply to the capacitor. When voltage is not applied, the crystals are scattered, and light is scattered. This creates a translucent appearance. When voltage is applied, the crystals align, light passes through and the window becomes clear. Operators can control the degree of transparency with the amount of voltage applied.

What are practical uses for smart glass?

Smart glass is ideal for many settings. It is often used for privacy control in conference rooms, bathroom and shower doors and intensive care areas. It can also be used to create temporary projection screens for presentations in a variety of settings.

What are the benefits of smart glass?

Smart glass offers a number of attractive benefits, including:

  • Flexibility: Smart glass makes windows and doors versatile. When you need privacy, you can have it. When you prefer an open view, that is an option, too.
  • Efficiency: Using smart glass, it is possible to control the amount of heat that passes through a window or glass wall. The smart glazing can create higher efficiency windows that conserve resources. Because the technology also controls the amount of light passing through, it can help maintain desired temperatures indoors, further conserving energy.
  • Special applications: Smart glazing can also be used to create anti X-ray smart glass or fire-rated structures that may be required in special settings.

Where can I find out more about smart glass?

If you’d like more information on this impressive technology, contact the team at Architectural Windows & Doors, Inc. Our experts have in-depth knowledge of innovative window and door solutions and are ready to answer any questions you have.

Discover smart solutions

Architectural Windows & Doors, Inc. is dedicated to delivering the highest-quality selection of windows and doors made from the finest materials. As experts in the door and window industry, we take great pride in assisting our customers with finding the perfect features for their dream home, from superior coatings to modern smart technology. Our complete selection of windows and doors is sure to meet all your architectural and stylistic needs. Contact us today to schedule an estimate for your next project.

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