Smart windows from U-SAVE: energy savings in winter and summer

Smart windows from U-SAVE: energy savings in winter and summer

April 16, 2024

On March 6th, the Interreg Flanders-Netherlands project U-SAVE had a successful launch. Within U-SAVE, a consortium which includes Brightlands Materials Center is developing and demonstrating smart windows featuring thermochromic glass that adapts to seasonal changes, reducing not only heating needs in winter but also cooling demands in summer.

The built environment is responsible for a significant part of global energy consumption and CO2 emissions, with rising temperatures leading to increasing heat stress. The use of air conditioning units is on the rise, further increasing energy consumption. While current insulation strategies reduce heating demand, they do not impact the growing need for cooling.

The smart window, scaled up to 1 m², will be integrated into an office building on the Brightlands Chemelot Campus and in the ‘SolarBEAT’ test building of TNO on the campus of Eindhoven University of Technology. Additionally, smart window frames with high insulation values are being produced. These designs are being developed with an eye on innovative designs to maximize both sustainability and functionality.

In parallel, U-SAVE is working on an adaptive sun shading system with semi-transparent slats treated with the same thermochromic material. This system dynamically adjusts to the building’s needs. This innovation will also be placed at the Brightlands Chemelot Campus, in a test building of Zuyd University of Applied Sciences.

These developments represent not only a technological breakthrough but also offer significant economic benefits. U-SAVE aims not only for energy savings up to 33% above current standards but also for an annual CO2 reduction with the potential of millions of tonnes.


The partners in U-SAVE, alongside TNO-Brightlands Materials Center, include Hasselt University, IMEC, Group Ceyssens, AGFA, Helwig Frames, Brightlands Chemelot Campus, Zuyd University of Applied Sciences, and Maastricht University.



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