viernes, 19 de octubre de 2012

Photovoltaic Safety Glazing applied to a Curtain Wall in Igualada, Spain

The new social housing complex located in Gaudí-street in Igualada, North-East Spain, was built with a South elevation integrating VIDURSOLAR PV-glass modules. The 42 PV-elements are incorporated as parapets in the curtain wall and are built as insulating double glazing units. This project is part of a programme of sustainable building promoted by the city council of Igualada and has also to fulfill the requirements of the Spanish Technical Building Code for this type of buildings.
In the design phase of the project, environmental and energetic sustainability of this new construction was one of the main aspects for drawing up the general specifications. So, the integration of renewable energy was seen as an important goal, but a big challenge seemed to be matching the renewable energy generation with an attractive architectural design. In order to achieve this objective, VIDURSOLAR PV-glass turned out to be the ideal construction element for building up this PV-façade.


The composition of the PV-glass complies with the thermal insulation requirements of the site according to national construction norms. The PV-elements additionally include a grey sun-control glass in the interior, in order to match the colour of the rest of the glazing units of the façade and to bring down the solar factor of the glazed curtain wall in order to prevent the building from overheating. The electrical circuit is build up by 30 multi-crystalline PV-cells that offer a total of 107 Wp per glass unit.

On the other hand, in order to comply with aesthetic requirements, an edge terminal connection system was used. So, the electrical terminals and the cabling are entirely hidden inside the aluminium support profile. It is important to state, that all safety norms for glass in construction has been complied with. Additionally, since January 2011, VIDURSOLAR PV-glass modules count with an official certificate according to the norms IEC EN 61215 y IEC EN 61730 for a family of products.

This architectural project shows that PV-technology can play an important role regarding the integration of renewable energy into urban spaces. With tailor-made PV-glass modules like those of VIDURSOLAR, construction elements with modern and innovative design and, above all, offering economical payback, can be applied. Their multi-functionality can be a key-aspect for its major use in the construction sector as, like in the present case. These PV-elements generate green electrical energy, offer shading and physical protection and additionally, represent an aesthetically unique and ecological image.

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