Scientists from the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore have developed a ‘liquid window’ designed to reduce energy consumption in buildings.
According to the research, the window panels are able to block the sunlight while absorbing heat that can be released during the day.
The NTU researchers found glass panels fitted with hydrogel-based liquid inside of them are able to reduce up to 45% of heating, ventilation and air-conditioning energy consumption in buildings, compared to traditional glass windows.
The ‘smart’ windows are also claimed to be 30% more energy efficient than commercially available glass while also being cheaper to make.
The scientific team tested the novel window in hot and cold environments and found the liquid window had a lower temperature of around 50°C during the hottest time of the day, compared to a normal glass window, which had a temperature of 84°C.
Dr Long Yi, Lead Author of the research and Senior Lecturer at the School of Materials Science and Engineering said: “Our innovation combines the unique properties of both types of materials, hydrogel and water. By using a hydrogel-based liquid we simplify the fabrication process to pouring the mixture between two glass panels.
“This gives the window a unique advantage of high uniformity, which means the window can be created in any shape and size.”