A Portuguese research team led Solar Trap – architecture; a design and architecture office working at the intersection of Architecture + Energy + Ecology since 1999, the prestigious University of Minho and SAPA – Building Systems, have joined efforts to improve an old passive solar technology known as ‘Ventilated Trombe Wall’ bringing it to the 21st century.
The idea was to create a facade element that functioning as a window, could also manage smartly the heat and air exchanges between the exterior and the interior of the buildings, keeping this phenomenon as open and passive as possible, using Sun as the main source of energy and airflow´s booster. The new technology in result of this project should have been able to be applied both in refurbishing as in new buildings.
Eco-Efficient Window, operates on two complementary levels:
1- The glass window facing sun that can open and close, where the direct solar gains occur. It can be automated or manual.
2 – The so-called ‘thermal module’, working as the intermediate of thermodynamic phenomena that occur between the outer and inner spaces by opening and closing the building in a controlled manner, taking advantage of the thermal inertia and heat storage properties of a material created to significantly increase Sun’s role in the thermal process.
In addition to heat storage, the thermal module has two other components that have also been designed to greatly improve its functioning – the transparent cylindrical greenhouse for a 30% increase in indirect heat performance through the airflow; and a rotating mirrored door following the daily solar cycle to increase by more than 15% the incidence of solar radiation in the heating storage modules.
An automated smart system that is adjustable to local solar and climatic conditions, manages JEE integration to achieve the most efficient results possible.