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Thermochromics for Energy-Efficient Buildings: Thin Surface Coatings and Nanoparticle Composites

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Nano and Biotech Based Materials for Energy Building Efficiency

Abstract

This chapter outlines the state of the art of the thermochromic glazings that are able to provide energy efficiency by letting in more solar energy at a low temperature than at a high temperature, thereby leading to diminished need for space cooling. Thermochromic technology employs VO2-based materials as thin coatings or nanoparticle composites. For coatings, suitable switching between conditions with high and low solar energy throughput at low and high temperature, respectively, can be achieved by replacing some of the vanadium atoms by tungsten, and luminous transmittance can be enhanced by the addition of some magnesium. Antireflection (AR) coatings can give further improvements. By going to nanoparticle composites with VO2 dispersed in a transparent host, it is possible to combine high luminous transmittance with large modulation of solar energy transmittance. This modulation ensues from plasmonic absorption in metallic-like VO2 nanoparticles. Thermochromic glazings are not yet (2015) available as products, but the rapid development during recent years has led to performance limits that appear very interesting for practical applications. Energy modeling of buildings with thermochromic glazings points at very substantial savings. A further development may be to integrate thermochromic nanoparticles in laminated electrochromic devices.

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Acknowledgments

Helpful comments on the text were obtained from Professor Ludvik Martinu. Financial support was obtained from the European Research Council under the European Community’s Seventh Framework Program (FP7/2007–2013)/ERC Grant Agreement No. 267234 (GRINDOOR).

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Ji, YX., Boman, M., Niklasson, G.A., Granqvist, CG. (2016). Thermochromics for Energy-Efficient Buildings: Thin Surface Coatings and Nanoparticle Composites. In: Pacheco Torgal, F., Buratti, C., Kalaiselvam, S., Granqvist, CG., Ivanov, V. (eds) Nano and Biotech Based Materials for Energy Building Efficiency. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-27505-5_4

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