SBIR Phase II: Thin Film Patterned Optical Retarders for Low Energy Smart Glass Applications

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1152252
Agency Tracking Number: 1152252
Amount: $500,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2012
Solicitation Topic Code: NM
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
South Bend, IN, 46617-1405
DUNS: 832708908
HUBZone Owned: Y
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Will McLeod
 (631) 245-3769
Business Contact
 Will McLeod
Phone: (631) 245-3769
Research Institution
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)Phase II project will develop a low-cost smart-window technology. This project will utilize contemporary display industry fabrication and processing technologies to create unique large-area optical films. These films will be subsequently used to construct energy-efficient smart windows that modulate transmission or reflection of light on command. Windows, skylights, and other glazings made with this technology will have the ability to darken on command. In this Phase II project, window-size prototypes will be designed, constructed and evaluated. Production, material costs, and prototype operation will be considered. Successful fabrication of these prototypes will enable smart windows to be manufactured in an electrochemically passive manner, simplifying their installation in existing windows, minimizing up-front costs, and ultimately reducing energy bills. The technology is also uniquely capable of being applied as an aftermarket or retrofit solution. The broader impact of this project will be a potential savings of billions of dollars in energy costs in the United States alone, and a reduction of carbon footprint. Buildings are responsible for seventy percent of the electricity consumed in the United States. As part of a daylighting /natural heating strategy, smart window technologies have received much attention for their ability to reduce building energy consumption. Unfortunately, existing smart window products suffer from severe limitations in lifespan, scalability and cost. The technology to be developed is a radically different approach to smart windows because instead of electrochemical processes, it utilizes stable films. This affords more chemical stability, longer life, better manufacturing scalability, power independence (via manual operation), and lower costs to the consumer.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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