The dream of constructing a net zero-energy building has yet to become a reality, but now an Israeli company has come up with an idea that could make it possible.
The innovative product from Pythagoras Solar can be described as a solar window that combines energy efficiency, power generation and transparency.
The world's first transparent photovoltaic glass unit (PVGU) has been designed to be easily integrated into conventional building design and construction processes. This means that existing office blocks can be retrofitted with the new material instead of energy-seeping glass windows - a process that will pay itself back within five years.
"What we have today - this is what we hear from architects - is very unique," Pythagoras Solar CEO Gonen Fink tells ISRAEL21c. "The high transparency makes for esthetically pleasing building designs.
"There are many companies today doing energy-efficient windows or energy generators using photovoltaics such as skylights, but this is mostly to show you can produce energy from the building's envelope. This is the first time somebody has actually combined the advantages in one product."