Building the Future
The UN estimates that by 2050, 2.5 billion additional people may live in urban areas compared with 2018. This means that a considerable number of new buildings will need to be constructed.
While mitigating the negative environmental impact of buildings is crucial, they also need to be designed with people in focus. Daylight in buildings greatly improves the well-being of occupants and glass provides a unique, non-substitutable material to capture natural light.
In the EU’s current building stock, 85% of the glazing used is not energy-efficient according to contemporary standards.
Buildings are essentially permanent – the structures built today are inherited by future generations. There is limited time remaining to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, so focusing on the biggest emitters has priority.
Modern windows are fabricated with transparent coatings to improve their energy-efficiency. These coatings act as a barrier to heat and cold, but come with the trade-off of attenuating daylight. We have developed an alloy material that optimizes energy-efficiency, while also allowing more visible light to enter the building than state-of-the-art silver-based coatings.
Contributing towards the SDGs
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) describe 17 key areas to be addressed in the global journey towards a sustainable future. Every goal outlines both specific targets to be achieved by 2030 and indicators on how performance is measured. See below for how we contribute (goal, target and indicator in parentheses):
Our material allows more natural light to pass through coated window glass. Exposure to daylight regulates our circadian rhythms and has been shown to improve alertness, mood and decrease blood pressure. (SDG 3.4.1, 3.4.2)
We enable windows to better retain warmth inside the building and better utilize solar radiation as a free and sustainable source of heat. This reduces the need for heating and makes buildings more energy-efficient. (SDG 7.3.1)
Decreasing the energy requirements of buildings alleviates demand on the power grid, thereby contributing to the reduction of CO2. (SDG 9.4.1)
The reduction in greenhouse gas emissions made possible through increased energy efficiency can contribute substantially towards reaching the climate goals of the Paris Agreement as well as climate neutrality in the EU.