Innovative Italian SME develops and engineers patents in the sustainable construction and new materials fields. The company patented a frame-less window with high energy efficiency and competitive cost.The company's innovative product is a window with a glass-only surface, which can also be used for the curtain wall systems.
The idea was born in the University field, during a research on the structural adhesives used for aircraft and trains to be transferred to the building industry. The company, beneficiary of the SME Instrument phase-1 under Horizon 2020 programme, was able to develop its know-how, creating a series of prototypes thanks to a close cooperation with windows and curtain walls manufacturers, structural adhesives producers and glass, aluminum and wood processing companies.
The new only glass window presents a small frame-profile adhesively jointed to the inner surface of the insulating glazing unit, in place of the traditional outer frame. The low-profile frame can be made of wood, aluminum with thermal break or of Glass Fiber Reinforced Polymer (GFRP) composite materials with high mechanical properties. The performance achieved by adhesives used, allows the frame-profile to be jointed to the glass, which becomes structurally cooperative, thus creating a self-supporting double glazing for the mobile window doors. Moreover the small frame, inside the insulating glass unit, achieves low heat loss, high strength and competitive production costs thanks to reduction in the use of components. It could be installed as a traditional window on new or existing buildings, and it is also suitable for nautical sectors needs.
State of art: the new technology meets the needs of energy efficiency in the building sector, where windows represent a weak point of the external envelope of buildings, being the most thermally dispersive components. Despite significant progress has been made in this field, the frame supporting the glazing remains the principle vulnerability in the window. Up to now research and innovation have moved in several directions but they were not able to address the problem of the heat dispersion from the window frame. Some of the existing technological solutions have increased the size of the frame to allow the insertion of the insulation inside (thermal break) without achieving the excellent performance of the glass. On the contrary, the producers of the so-called “minimal” windows reduced the frame around the glass to a minimum, to meet the customer's aesthetic desires but they got a window not very strong, energetically inefficient and very expensive. Other windows on the market, defined “only-glass” windows, actually require a frame around the mobile wings or inside or outside of the building, without revolutionizing the basic technology.
The base concept of the innovative window is to completely remove the frame from the edge in order to leave to the glass with the task of insulating the interior of the building. The glass-only window, without an external frame, significantly reduces the leakage points, controls water-air infiltration to the maximum and provides the most heat retention, therefore fully meeting the expectations of the sector.
The Italian company seeks industrial partners operating in building and nautical sector at international level to perform a license agreement. Partners from Germany, Sweden, France, United Kingdom and Netherlands are preferred.