Most innovative solar product

EnergyGlass, SAF-Glas LLC

EnergyGlass is the only fully transparent glass in the world that generates electricity, according to its manufacturer, SAF-Glas LLC. Installed as a commercial curtain-wall product, EnergyGlass generates power by redirecting a portion of the light spectrum to the edge of the glass where solar cells convert the photons to electricity.

EnergyGlass is provided as a glass/glass laminate or as an insulating glass unit. It can have all the additional features that glaziers have supplied for many years, including low-E coatings, color and heat-treating. A proprietary edge-connector allows for ease-of-installation for routing wiring inside the mullion. All handling and installation methods are exactly the same as with any standard glazing unit.

As a glass/glass laminate, EnergyGlass also has passed large missile impact and cyclic wind pressure tests to meet hurricane impact standards for Dade County, Fla. Installed in a curtain wall, EnergyGlass provides a means for vision glass to have building integrated photovoltaics with no aesthetic impact, while providing hurricane impact resistance, according to SAF-Glas officials.

Says Glass Magazine Award Judge Rob Botman, general manager, Glassopolis, “What I like about the SAF-Glas product is that it remains completely transparent while generating some electricity. It adds a new option for building envelope designers to achieve the exact envelope performance they are looking for. If you can tune your envelope for solar heat gain and insulation values, etc., why not equally tune it for the visible light gain and power generation values you want as well?”

EnergyGlass is now available for quotes into project for a 2013 delivery. At press time, it had been installed on a research facility overseas, with its first U.S. project installation scheduled for fourth quarter 2012 or first quarter 2013. To read more about the EnergyGlass product, read “PV you can’t see.”