The Potential of Structured Switchable Glazing

Resulting from the research conducted over the past decades various types of switchable glazing are now available to regulate the input of natural light and energy into buildings. These types of glazing are based on electrochromic, theromochromic or photochromic materials, others use suspended particles, micro-slat foils or liquid crystals. Currently the transparency and thereby the g-value of those windows are controlled as a whole, or if segmented, as larger units of the window area. The total potential of adaptive glazing may only be achieved if they are segmented into small, individual and independently controllable units, so-called pixels. This allows for adjusting the transparency to control overall energy- and light flux into rooms according to illumination needs independently from glare protection. Glare prevention may be achieved by only spot-wise tinting of the appropriate smaller areas of the window. This paper will show the efficiency of liquid crystal based structured glazing as the result of tests conducted in two rooms of an experimental façade test building equipped with such a sub-structured glazing.