Princeton develops smart windows with automatic tint

You may soon no longer need to open and close blinds or curtains to create the right level of lighting in the room or get rid of prying eyes. Future windows will appear, adjusting the level of transparency depending on external conditions.

A team of Princeton University researchers has developed a smart window system that uses transparent panels to collect solar ultraviolet radiation.

Sunlight is a real "cocktail" of different wavelengths, which includes, in particular, infrared light warming the planet, as well as ultraviolet rays, which are known to be harmful in high doses. Today mainly infrared radiation is used, while UV radiation is simply blocked. Scientists at Princeton have found a way to use it to power the system.

"Smart" windows are made of electrochromic material, which has the property of changing the hue from transparent to dark blue when a low power electrical signal is applied. The energy source will be a transparent solar battery, which is part of the window. It is a thin film glued to glass.

According to Princeton University graduate student, chemist Nikolai Davy, previously created smart windows operated from infrared radiation. This is not entirely rational, since infrared rays are used to heat rooms. Therefore, when creating their power source, they relied on UVI.

The integration of solar film panels into smart windows makes them more attractive for residential use and at the same time completely non-volatile. Another promising direction is the use of films for tinting car windows.