The future is here! With the latest developments in high-tech materials, smart glass takes consumer control to a whole new level.
In the past, the options we, as homebuilders, had to offer were limited when it came to choosing windows and other glass materials. That is no longer the case. Smart glass has the home building industry on its toes, rethinking the endless possibilities that smart-tech both creates and allows, and MGB couldn’t be more excited to share this latest and greatest technology!
The high-tech material offers new ways to handle privacy and temperature control, something we know to be absolutely invaluable to our clients. It also has the unique ability to conceal gadgets (or simply, family dinners) from sight. Smart glass started as the cool, new feature incorporated into workplace environments. Now, we’re seeing that more homeowners are demanding the smart technology for their homes.
How it Works
Smart windows are made with a special, high-tech glass that has the ability to quickly change from clear to opaque or tinted. They also selectively block light, heat or glare. It’s all about personal preference for each client.
The glass consists of two panels that sandwich a polymer-dispersed liquid-crystal film that conducts electricity. Until voltage is switched on, the glass is opaque. Once a current flows, the film’s particles align turning the glass transparent.
For even the most technologically challenged homebuyer, control is simple. All you have to do is turn a dial. Turn one dial, and the glass will absorb infrared light, reducing the heat from the sunlight from coming indoors. Turn another dial, and the glass will go dark or opaque for privacy. What’s more is clients who incorporate smart glass into their homes enjoy absolute control over heat and light and are able to adjust the entire system with just a touch of a button, according to preference. It’s all right there at your fingertips!
This switchable privacy glass does so much more than conceal homebuyers from the prying eyes of outsiders. This glass can also be used to divide and completely conceal rooms or home gadgets, like televisions. For example, say you have a panel installed separating your open kitchen from you living room. If you want to create a partition for more privacy, you can simply turn the glass on, so that the wall turns from translucent to opaque, creating a whole new wall.
Smart glass can even be hooked up to motion sensors. This, for example, may be a nice element if your shower has glass doors. You can set up sensors to turn the glass enclosure opaque as soon as you turn the shower water on for extra privacy.
Benefits of Installing Smart Glass
For those of us who deal with the hot, Florida sun almost year-round, incorporating smart glass into your home is a wonderful option, as we, here at MGB, have done with this beautiful, Point Crisp dream home. The glass is both energy efficient and heat resistant, and it doesn’t interfere with your gorgeous outdoor views. Smart glass also lets architects use fewer sun-control devices, allowing them to increase the amount of glass used in a building, as is also evident in our Point Crisp project, which incorporates nearly 360 degree views.
On average, a standard-sized window made of smart glass will only use about as much electricity as an alarm clock. The cost of installation is about twice that of a regular window, but smart glass will cut down on heating and cooling costs, ultimately recouping the added expense.
One of the most appealing features of smart glass, to MGB as well as the general public, is how sustainable it is. It can block heat and light independently of one another, meaning that it can block the heat from the sun while still letting sunshine in. For many homebuyers and home designers, smart glass is an alternative replacement for blinds, shades and curtains, but one day, the hope is that smart glass will get really smart, turning your windows and walls into computer screens with just the touch of a button.
The future of home technology and smart windows is very bright (or dark, depending on how you prefer it), and MGB is so excited to actively share in this technological transition. The sustainable features alone make incorporating the latest products into your home a no-brainer. Not only will you be saving money in the long run, you’ll be the most out-of-this world neighbors on the block!