The AGC Group (AGC), the world's largest glass manufacturer, and Kinestral Technologies, a leading US developer of active glass, have formed a strategic partnership to produce active glass capable of fast-switching between clear and dark mode. This glass will serve the building and transportation (trains) industries.
Unprecedented prospects for building
In its full dark mode the active glass blocks out sunlight and the associated heat and glare entirely, and provides complete privacy. In clear mode it lets in natural light, affording normal daylight views. Electrical power is used only during switching. For Jean-François Heris, General Manager of the Building Division of AGC, this glass opens up new prospects: “The trend to nearly zero energy building is reducing the use of glazings in favor of thick opaque walls, or concealing them behind solar shading systems. AGC is committed to remove these constraints by introducing a game changing range of energy efficient glazing solutions that will at the same time create emotional ties with people by connecting them to their environment”.
Exciting user experience thanks to unrivalled technology
For AGC the choice of Kinestral Technologies as its partner is based on the unrivalled technological advantages of the solution: excellent optical quality of the glass and neutral colour, fast and uniform switching speed along with all intermediate modes possible between clear and dark. All these features coupled with intelligent control systems contribute to creating a unique user experience: light and heat entering the living or work space can easily match the ever-changing needs and mood of the occupants.
Accelerated market introduction
Apart from combining the know-how of respective companies, the partnership is also financial, industrial and commercial; AGC will acquire a financial stake, while the two partners will collaborate in building a large-scale production plant and combining their marketing networks, thus exploiting their geographical complementarity.
For Kinestral Technologies this strategic partnership will speed up the introduction of its technology in the construction industry, in pursuit of greater comfort, energy efficiency and higher environmental performance. "AGC's worldwide reach and its expertise in advanced glass solutions will make a crucial contribution to this deployment," said Dr Sb Cha, CEO of Kinestral Technologies.