Developing Active Windows and Façades through Innovation and Collaboration

Globally the fourth industrial revolution is underway, fundamentally altering the way we live, work, and relate to one another. The transition is characterised by the fusion of physical and digital technologies. Previously, the improvement of aesthetics and thermal performance of glazing has been focussed on the introduction of Solar Control and Low Emissivity coatings. In the architectural landscape, the ratio between open and closed façades is increasing towards the glass side of the balance. Considering these trends, it becomes clear that opportunities are present for the glass industry to develop passive transparent building materials into active and dynamic façades, to enable the buildings of the future. Such a challenge demands new skillsets and innovative thinking, which can be hard to foster within one working environment alone. Multinationals and innovative start-ups can combine knowledge and expertise on the digital platform, plus experience and capacity on the physical platform. This talk presents a future of the window and glazing systems, consisting of the integration of photovoltaic technology, sensor devices, and communication protocol. It also shares a vision and best practice examples of how a multinational glass manufacturer and a 4th industrial technology start-up can join forces to innovate beyond their separate capabilities.