#175: Variable stainglass

Office buildings are usually equipped with double-glazed units: large numbers of them. Triple glazing would actually be only marginally more expensive (around 5% extra, if you believe the brochures).

Today’s invention is a way to use this technology to brighten up both working environments and city centres as well as cutting down on the glare which often requires expensive sunshades to be fitted to buildings, post commissioning.

Luke_Partridge_skyscraper391.jpg

Each window would have a triple-glazed window unit. Only one of the two voids would however ‘contain’ a partial vacuum. The other would be narrower than standard (say 1mm thick) and have a small inlet and outlet pipe attached to the space.

The narrow space would be used to hold a thin film of liquid. This liquid could have dye added to it to vary the translucency of the window during the course of a day and from season to season.

The colour of the dye might be used to enhance the mood of the occupants of the building. At any rate, they could all vote, using a picker tool in a browser, for their choice of colour, which would then drive the dye injection machinery.

A skyscraper might even be transformed in this way into a massive, coloured advertising image (or a cellular automaton, if you prefer).

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