Heating systems using water-filled glazing could offer huge energy savings over the more commonly used technologies, according to Dr Matyas Gutai of Loughborough University who devised the concept.
Dr Gutai says Water Filled Glazing offers energy savings of up to 72% compared to buildings using conventional heating and double glazing.
Gutai has been studying water-filled glass for a decade and has created two 'water houses' in Hungary & Tokyo where he developed the system to both heat and cool structures.
Water Filled Glass (WFG) works by connecting the water filled window panels to a storage tank using pipes hidden in the walls, allowing fluid to circulate between the two.
This system allows the 'water houses' to cool & reheat themselves while not requiring additional energy for the majority of the year.
When warm the building stays cool as the water absorbs external and internal heat, the warm water is circulated to the storage tank. The heat is stored in the tank and if the temperature drops it can be recirculated back into the walls to reheat the building using a monitoring system. The stored heat may also be used for properties hot water supply.
Dr Gutai's latest research has shown that water-filled glass system perform well in any inhabited climate and should greatly appeal to those looking to reduce carbon footprints.
"Glass is currently a liability in buildings as it compromises energy consumption, thermal comfort, acoustics and other aspects", Dr Gutai says.
"WFG changes the paradigm and turns glass into an opportunity for sustainable construction."
"It shows us that thinking holistically about buildings and building components leads to a more efficient and sustainable built environment."
"In case of a window for example, if we see it as an isolated system, solar overheating is a challenge that needs to be remedied with cooling."
"If we approach this holistically, the heat surplus is an opportunity because the same heat is missing from somewhere else."