Everything you want to know about Switchable Smart Film PDLC

01 - 06 - 2023

Switchable Smart Film PDLC, understood as intelligent glass, has rapidly established itself as an innovative feature used by architects and interior designers for their most luxurious and refined projects.

Smart Film PDLC | Innoptec

Switchable Smart Film PDLC, understood as intelligent glass, has rapidly established itself as an innovative feature used by architects and interior designers for their most luxurious and refined projects.

Developed in the first half of the 1980s in the United States of America, smart glass is now used to regulate the amount of light, or brightness, entering a room circumscribed by glazed walls while providing and managing secure privacy without the use of curtains and blinds. 

Thanks also to the increasingly minimalist trend in furnishing, the importance of natural light and the need to make rooms versatile and functional, it can be said that smart glass has become the material of choice for architects and interior designers.

Intelligent glass: the solutions available

There are several solutions developed by Innoptec® in the Rovereto laboratory: LPF film for glass lamination, Click-LPF in self-adhesive film, Patterned film with dynamic patterns and Reverse film (transparent in the OFF state, translucent in the ON state).
All four solutions offer unique advantages and features, and are capable of capturing and intercepting the privacy, shading and functionality needs of their purchasers. With a simple electrical impulse, the liquid crystal molecules contained within the film disperse and align, changing the transparency of the glass.

Normally the Switchable Smart Film PDLC is operated at 60Vac (60Volt alternating current - 50/60Hz).
Innoptec® has developed a new category of films identified as NY or NK (NY is the layering version and NK is the self-adhesive version), capable of operating at 45Vac with the same optical performance (transparency/haze).
Even in their opaque state, this type of film shows benefits over standard films in that it can offer even greater protection in terms of privacy.
The advantages of this new possibility are many:

  • Lower power consumption with possibility. The saving in terms is about 50%!
  • Savings in the use of transformers as 45Vac transformers can supply a larger area with the same power.
  • Greater long-term reliability of the electrodes, which is very important especially in hot/humid environments where the current consumption of the films is higher.
  • The low-voltage version of the tinted glass also has an undeniable advantage in terms of safety from accidental risks during and after assembly and wiring.

PDLC - Polymer Dispersed Liquid Crystal

Innoptec®'s PDLC Smart Film is a film containing tiny droplets of electrically steerable liquid crystal, protected by a polymer matrix. The film, applied to a transparent glass surface (or other material as long as it is transparent), supports switching from opaque to transparent, providing customised privacy, IR reflection but also providing excellent HD support for rear projection. 

Switchable Smart Film PDLC for architects and designers

> Dynamic Patterned Designs
PDLC Film can be patterned with customised dynamic designs, shapes and transitions that add unique aesthetics and communicative functionality. The graphic element, i.e. the section to be made dynamic, is etched with lines almost invisible to the human eye directly onto the smart film.

The transition from transparent to translucent of these sections can be controlled by setting a predefined or random sequence: in addition, when all sections are on the glass can show completely transparent while when all sections are off the glass can show completely translucent.

> Retroprojection
Innoptec® Film has a low angular haze index (about 13% at 45°) making it perfect as a light screen for rear-projections visible from a wide angle. Intelligent glass therefore becomes a true HD digital display on which to project communications, messages, advertising, entertainment; ideal in all retail environments but also in television theatres and entertainment venues. 

> Architectural and interior design projects
The only limitation of PDLC Smart Film is the creative flair of architects and interior designers. In fact, the Innoptec® film, in all available solutions, is supplied in sheets up to two metres wide and three metres long, with the possibility of cutting into curved shapes, with holes and cutouts for hinges or handles (when used on doors or windows), with pre-cutting of the electrode strip, with the application of the electrodes themselves.

> Smart Glass Boards
A glass wall can be transformed into a perfect 'extra large blackboard'. An elegant messaging board with a sophisticated design, compatible with any marker pen and extremely easy to clean.

> Residential
The minimalist and elegant design of glass integrates perfectly with the most diverse trends and designs: partitions, French windows, showers, etc.
Also compatible with all home automation systems on the market.

> Luxury hotels
In addition to adding sophisticated aesthetics, smart glass makes fabric curtains - expensive and difficult to clean - unnecessary and makes rooms optically more spacious thanks to the possibility of making them open-plan. 

> Hospitals and clinics
In hospitals, clinics and dental surgeries, hygiene and cleanliness are essential requirements; thanks to intelligent glass, patients can permeate the privacy of their room without the use of the more classic curtain or grille, which often harbours dust, bacteria and germs.
The use of intelligent glass, thanks to its extreme versatility and elegance, therefore offers architects and designers endless opportunities to be creative and has proven to be the ideal application for anyone wishing to improve the comfort, convenience, safety and sustainability of a home.

Do you have an upcoming project? Contact an Innoptec® expert now!