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Today there is yet one more invisible coating available to improve the properties of window glass. At first there were the nearly invisible, low-emissivity coatings, which admit daylight. Some of them can also admit beneficial passive solar gain. These prevent winter heat loss by reflecting, or not emitting, long-wave (10 micrometer wavelength) infrared thermal radiation. These low-emissivity coatings also enhance the effectiveness of heat absorbing solar control tinted glass, and reflective coatings, by preventing absorbed solar heat from radiating towards the room side of a window. Now clear, self-cleaning coatings are available for the outer surface of the window. These coatings act in different ways to prevent the deposition and build-up of dirt. Some can rinse inorganic dust off the glass with rain or water by their hydrophobic, or hydrophilic properties. Some of them can break down deposited organic dirt using a catalytic action powered by the ultraviolet component of daylight.
glass, self-cleaning, hydrophobic, hydrophilic, photocatalytic
Director of Technical Services, Pilkington North America Inc., Toledo, OH
Pilkington North America Inc., Toledo, OH