Smart glass is a switchable glass or glazing. By applying power, light or heat to glass, it changes the light transmission properties such as from crystal clear vision to blocking light. Smart glass is an innovative building material which is made from electrochromic glass to create intelligent partitions, windows, and skylights. Smart glass technologies include electrochromic, photochromic, thermochromic, suspended-particle, micro-blind and polymer-dispersed liquid-crystal devices. Electrochromic is a phenomenon in which materials changes its color when the electrical voltage is applied to them. Electrochromic glasses are available in various types that use different technologies to change glass appearance from translucent to transparent.
This smart glass technology is possible to apply in eco-friendly windows, windshields, roof panels, and building envelopes which could absorb light and heat in the winter and reflect it away in the summer. Traditional windows are made from a single pane of glass; however, smart windows include two glass panels which are separated by an air gap to improve heat insulation and soundproofing. Moreover, few windows are coated with a thin layer of metal oxide chemicals that are deposited by a metal deposition process to keep inside temperature warm in winter and cool in summer.
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Smart glasses are energy savers and having the huge environmental benefit that will reduce air-conditioner usage in summers and heaters in winters by turning windows dark or bright electronically by using very less amount of electricity. According to US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), smart windows could save up to 8 percent energy consumption of building which uses less amount of power to switch from dark to light. It requires energy usage by the single incandescent lamp to turn 100 smart windows light from dark. Moreover, these windows could provide privacy, convenience, and improvised security.
Factors Influencing Market Growth:
The major smart glass market is expected to drive by automotive and construction industries due to increasing demand for smart glass for vehicle windows as well as residential & commercial infrastructures. These smart glasses are crystal clear, thinner, curved, tint adjustment facilities, UV protection, and signal friendly with satellite radio, GPS, cellular and tire monitoring system. Further, strong government support for energy efficient construction as these smart glass windows are able to save overall energy required to illuminate the building and reduced the use of air-conditioners in summers. Moreover, it is possible in future to use solar energy to power these smart windows which would be possible to provide better opportunities for smart glass market in upcoming years. However, the presence of substitutes such as chemical glazes and decals & coatings as well as high costing of smart glasses is anticipated to hamper the smart glass market growth.
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Geographically, the smart glass market is segregated in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and LAMEA (Latin America, Middle East and Africa). The major growth factors for smart glass market in the North American region are increasing usage of smart glass in automotive and construction sectors due to less maintenance cost and energy saving conclusion. Further, the U.S and several European countries government are planning to install electronic equipment with smart glass technology in public and private transport vehicle services. However, continuous growth in real estate sector in Asia-Pacific region countries such as China, Japan, India, and South Korea as well as heavy usage of transportation services are expected to create better demand for smart glass market in future.
The major key players in smart glass market are SageGlass, Research Frontiers Inc., View, Inc., Asahi India Glass Limited, Gentex Corporation, Hitachi Chemical Co., Ltd., Glass Apps, LLC, Pleotint LLC, Polytronix, Inc., and RavenWindow. These players are trying to recognize the needs of the market in developing countries and expanding their strategies to improve business needs.
n June 2017, Israel based startup Gauzy developed a smart glass car door window that turns it into HD video display which could show localized information. It could be ultra-thin LCDs powered by the electrical system in the car. However, Gauzy is working with Diamler AG to develop a real-life application for this futuristic technology.
On December, 2016 VINCI Construction and Sunpartner Technologies announced their 50/50 joint venture and launched new connected smart glass window featuring photovoltaic panels and multiple sunlight sensors which is a three in one solution that combines window, a sunshade, and a blind.
Global Smart Glass Market Segmentation:
• Suspended Particle Devices (SPD)
• Polymer Disperse Liquid Crystal (PDLC)
• Power Generation
• Consumer Electronics
• North America (U.S and Canada and rest of North America)
• Europe (Germany, France, Italy and Rest of Europe)
• Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, India, South Korea and Rest of Asia-Pacific)
• LAMEA (Brazil, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Rest of LAMEA)
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