The Building Electrification Window



Stephen Selkowitz: Each year in the United States, windows are responsible for about 30 percent of the energy used to heat and cool buildings—about 4.1 quads—at a cost of $50 billion. This consumption is a result of thermal heat losses and gains across windows, air leakage, and transmission of solar heat into buildings.

In the summer, conventional windows allow heat from sunlight to enter buildings, increasing cooling load. This solar heat gain tends to be the major driver of summer afternoon cooling peaks—usually even a bigger driver than air temperature. In the winter, windows are poor insulators compared to walls and allow heat to leak from buildings, increasing heating loads on HVAC systems.

Better window technologies offer numerous energy savings opportunities and improved comfort. High-performance windows can minimize solar heat gain in the summer to reduce cooling loads, admit solar heat and insulate against heat loss in the winter, reduce energy consumption for artificial lighting during the daytime, and reduce a building’s peak heating and cooling load.

Windows are unique building elements. Unlike heating, cooling, and lighting systems where the typical design strategy is to reduce energy use to lower levels, windows have the potential to be zero net energy or even net-positive energy. For instance, in northern climates in winter, if windows reduce thermal losses and capture solar gains, they can become net-positive energy.


Stephen Selkowitz, recently retired as department head and a senior advisor for building science at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, is one of the world’s foremost experts on windows and building façades. His conversation with EPRI Journal reveals that the potential for emerging window technologies to transform power grid operations is much larger than most realize. He points to the significant reductions in energy consumption and peak demand that are possible. Utilities can play an important role in this window revolution. Full Article Here

IQ Radiant Glass and Jansen High Performance Steel Windows have the unique assets and experience to achieve this goal today. Our joint unmatched experience in historic restoration and Jansen's 100 years of manufacturing excellence are here to help.

Explore your possibilities to reach NET ZERO in the building electrification process: CONTACT US

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