A wall can do more than simply provide insulation, and a window more than let in the light and show us the view. Photo: SINTEF

Building façades will soon be thinking for themselves

Technology embedded in walls or windows is going to make our homes even smarter.

This is the aim of a new research project called SkinTech (Advanced building skins with integrated technology), which is being headed by SINTEF.

Major developments are taking place in technologies for these types of systems, such as wall-embedded solar cells and window-integrated sun shading – just to mention a couple.

“For instance, we can envisage windows installed with additional night-time insulation that reduce heat loss with the help of exterior screens, or the use of double façade constructions to promote the passive heating or cooling of ventilation air”, says researcher and Project Manager Steinar Grynning.

Much of the research will be based on systems tests carried out in SINTEF’s Zero Emission Laboratory) in Trondheim, and in a demonstration facility erected by the building materials manufacturer Saint-Gobain.

The partners in this project are SINTEF, NTNU, Saint Gobain AS, NorDan and the façade manufacturer Schücho. The project is being funded by the Research Council of Norway and the industrial project partners. The project has a term of three years.