Picture of Polarizing Window

The goal of this project was to develop intelligent skins for houses. More specifically addressed to the needs of learning environments. We aim to build a window with the ability to automatically detect bright light and shade itself as a result.

We considered using both electrochromic glass or polarizing films for shading the window. The mechanical solution using polarizing films offers the possibility to continuously adjust light transmission and therefore improves usability. Because of this and because of the high cost of electrochromic glass we went for the latter one.

The basic idea is twisting one polarizing film against another. When both films are perpendicular to each other the window is shaded, when both are parallel the window is transparent. We employ a luminosity sensor in order to trigger the rotational mechanism.

For the prototype we used plain film with stripes on it to demonstrate the functionality of our window, this further reduced the cost of the prototype. In reality polarized films should be used in order to assure the desired functionality.

This project was part of Multimodal Media Madness 2014, hosted by the
chair for Computer Aided Architectural Design (CAAD) and the Media Computing Group of RWTH Aachen University. For more Thinking Skins, please check this page: http://hci.rwth-aachen.de/m3_ss14

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euvremer1 year ago
You can turn it by hand as well

This is really interesting project! I'm very curious about different smart skins now...