Modern man spends more than 90% of the time indoors. Our biological roots, however, make us want to have natural daylight and visual contact with the surrounding environment to live a comfortable life. Hence, large windows are highly desirable to perceive the world around us. Contrasting this general requirement, varying seasons, weather conditions, and social circumstance demand dynamical transparency for energy savings, comfort and privacy reasons. In the study by Madhuri et al., the authors present an approach for a new type of smart window based on a thermochromic and liquid crystal that enables independent control of the visible and infrared radiation by combining thermochromic VO2
and liquid crystal technologies. The authors propose a spectrally selective window device able to control the radiative exchange of energy in a dynamic way. In addition, the hybrid nature of the coating allows independent control of the visible radiation by the liquid crystal component, and of the infrared radiation by the embedded VO2
films. Although it is a work in progress, and the components need to be improved to achieve the desired requirements, the study shows that the dynamic transparency requirement for windows may find its solution in combined chromogenic technologies.
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