Outdoor apparel company Patagonia has installed 22 of NEXT Energy Technologies’ energy-generating windows at its corporate headquarters in Ventura, California.
The windows, featuring NEXT’s proprietary transparent photovoltaic (PV) coating, were installed on the south-facing facade of the Olive Building on the U.S. retailer’s main campus. The building houses offices, an employee gym and climbing wall.
This marks the first time that NEXT’s transparent PV coating, which transforms commercial windows into solar-powered ones, has been demonstrated on a building. The project follows the demonstration of three other freestanding facade units containing the window technology, one each in Santa Barbara and Fremont in California and internationally in Paris.
Walters & Wolf collaborated on the project, taking charge of the design, fabrication, and installation of the glazing system that integrates energy-harvesting windows developed by NEXT. SolarFab, a division of GlassFab Tempering Services, handled the fabrication of the module units.
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NEXT's windows are made by printing a transparent PV coating directly onto architectural glass, which is then sealed behind a secondary sheet of glass and integrated into a standard glazing system that carries cables for delivering renewable energy for on-site use in the building.
The windows installed by NEXT at Patagonia provide dedicated power to the building for charging phones and other devices, and offer real-time power output and charging information for employees to monitor usage in the community spaces.
“We rely on 100-percent renewable electricity for our owned and operated facilities in the United States and 76-percent globally, achieved through on-site and off-site installations,” Corley Kenna, Head of Communications and Public Policy at Patagonia, said. “We have funded more than 1,000 solar arrays on homes across the U.S. and have helped install more than 600 kW of solar power globally to support agriculture. Finding better ways of doing business is something we always strive to do and we’re pleased to partner with NEXT Energy to help us be a more responsible company.”
The windows are expected to produce 20-percent to 30-percent of the power produced by conventional solar panels, offsetting 10-percent to 40-percent of a typical commercial building’s energy load. The windows also capture and convert infrared light, reducing the building’s heat load and alleviating strain on the power infrastructure.
Daniel Emmett, CEO and co-founder of NEXT Energy Technologies, said, “Global building stock is expected to double by 2060, and if transparent PV windows can be deployed widely on buildings during this timeframe, they have the potential to reduce GHG emissions from the built environment by over 1 gigaton per year, a huge opportunity for climate impact.”
NEXT Energy Technologies is a Santa Barbara, California-based company developing transparent PV window technology that allows architects and building owners to transform windows and glass facades into producers of low-cost, on-site, renewable energy for buildings.