This article was originally published on the Ubiquitous Energy website
Redwood City, CA – NSG Group (Nippon Sheet Glass, Co. Ltd. ), one of the world’s largest manufacturers of glass and glazing products for the architectural, automotive and technical glass sectors, has announced a joint development agreement between its subsidiary and Ubiquitous Energy, a leader in transparent solar technology. The ongoing joint development work targets the development, manufacture, and integration of Ubiquitous Energy’s ClearView Power™ technology into architectural window glass that has the potential to produce solar electricity for buildings. NSG’s participation includes ongoing research and development (R&D) and technical support.
Ubiquitous Energy’s transparent solar coating, ClearView Power™, selectively absorbs and converts non-visible light (ultraviolet and infrared) to electricity while transmitting visible light. This makes ClearView Power technology the only truly transparent solar product, allowing any surface to convert ambient light into useful electricity without impacting the way it looks. The transparent solar coating can be applied directly to architectural windows during the standard glass manufacturing process, allowing buildings to generate their own onsite renewable energy as part of the building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) market. Additionally, ClearView Power™ blocks infrared solar heat, improving the energy efficiency of buildings, which in combination with energy generation can lead to zero net energy buildings and beyond.
“Having worked with Ubiquitous Energy for some time now, we have been impressed with ClearView Power’s differentiation amongst BIPV products and in particular its proven ability to meet the aesthetic demands of mass market glazing products that are acceptable to architects, designers, and occupants,” said Stephen Weidner, NSG Vice President Sales and Marketing Architectural and Technical Glass Products. “We have witnessed first-hand the company’s steady progress towards commercialization and we look forward to working together closely with Ubiquitous to bring this technology to the market.”
“As we continue to build our ecosystem of partnerships across the glass industry, we are thrilled to work with NSG to help bring ClearView Power™ to market as part of the more than nine billion square meters per year of annual global glass production,” said Ubiquitous Energy CEO Keith Wilson. “NSG brings a wealth of unique knowledge to our development efforts as a global leader in advanced architectural window glass products that also has experience bringing BIPV products to market. We have hit a number of key milestones together over the past year and are excited to publicly announce this partnership.”
A new push
I approached Ubiquitous Energy to ask if I could feature this story on DGB. They kindly replied and said that I could, and you can find a link to the original story on their website below.
I chose to feature this particular story because we’re at a time in our sector where we need to be proving to the general public that our industry can go about it’s business in a sustainable way. You may remember a few years ago that clear solar cells were invented and we all got a bit excited about what could be done with them. At the time, whilst we were getting giddy about the possibilities, there was much to do to make it viable.
So I then came across Ubiquitous Energy, a US company operating out of Silicone Valley who has been making a business out of Solar Windows for a while. This is how they describe themselves:
Ubiquitous Energy is a Silicon Valley technology company leading the development of transparent photovoltaics with its award-winning ClearView Power™ technology—the world’s first truly transparent solar technology. Ubiquitous Energy is implementing its ClearView Power technology into a wide range of products as an invisible, onboard source of electricity.
ClearView Power technology serves as an invisible, power-producing coating for windows to offset energy consumption in buildings or autonomously power electronic smart window functionality. True transparency is achieved by selectively transmitting light visible to the human eye, while converting invisible ultraviolet and near-infrared light into electricity. This allows these invisible films to be integrated directly into the surface of window glass without disrupting the view. Among other applications, ClearView Power technology can be applied to the display area of electronic products—including wearables, tablets, internet-of-things devices, and digital signage—generating electricity to power these devices.
They’re based in the US, but they’re getting help from NSG, owners of Pilkington. If all continues to go well, I don’t see why the tech can’t make its way across the Atlantic to the UK and European markets.
The exciting thing here for me though is the possibilities this could have for smart tech for windows. In their description they talk about their technology being able to power smart tech via solar power generated through their product. Well, here in the UK we’re now getting stuck into smart tech for windows and doors, and I can already see a clear synergy here. Imagine the new Smart Ready tech being able to be powered by ClearView Power™.
There’s real potential here. It would be great if some UK companies could take a look at this and try to connect a few dots and make something happen for the British sector.
Catch the original article on the Ubiquitous Energy website here: http://ubiquitous.energy/nsg/
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