The energy producing window that is starting to power through the green energy industry.
Green technology is constantly moving forward, both in terms of how old technology is implemented and what new technology is developed. Even as older technology like offshore wind power and solar panels are beginning to be implemented en masse, new technology to help in the battle to get green energy is brought forward. Perhaps one of the better examples of this is building integrated photovoltaic glass, or BIPV glass.
BIPV glass cannot simply be added to established buildings like solar panels can. It requires too big of an investment in a building’s structure. If you architect a new building though, with BIPV glass in mind, it can be a great source of electricity, even if just using it as replacement windows rather than a huge part of the structure. The only apparent different between BIPV glass and ordinary glass from a functional and aesthetic standpoint are the wires on the interior side of the glass. These wires are connected to batteries or an electric grid to store power. Structurally, BIPV glass is still quite different when compared to regular glass, being made as dual pane glass with photovoltaic film in between the two panes.
More information on BIPV glass can be found at the Solar Power International trade show in Orlando, Florida. The show is expected to have 21,000 attendants from 100 countries. The booth is run by the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, and is found at booth #362. Keep an eye out for Joe Upchurch and the IUPAT, who will be showing the expert installation of BIPV glass. The process of making BIPV glass is actually quite interesting, as it is considered to be a glazing process rather than simply installing hardware, making it quite distinct to the process and attitude surrounding solar panels and similar green energy sources. The booth of course also contains other energy saving methods.
BIPV glass has a unique role to fill. As a replacement for ordinary glass, it needs to be able to withstand all sorts of temperatures and weather while still keeping those inside the building as comfortable, if not even more so than they would have been with ordinary glass. Yet, due to its nature as a harvester of green energy, it needs to also work as roof shingles or even as multiple window building envelope ‘walls’.
In the end, BIPV glass has challenges to face unique to any other provider of green energy. However, it is an incredible hassle free method of gathering green energy, and if it is able to be implemented well it could revolutionize the field of energy and society at large.
Derek is an active blogger. The following article is for replacement windows.