MARTIN BOND / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARTIN BOND / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Transparent insulation. A house built with transparent insulation, designed to maximize the use of solar energy for space heating. The glazed wall panels each consist of a layer of glass beneath which is a layer of transparent insulator, in this case granular aerogel. Behind the insulating layer is the absorber surface, the dark, matt-painted wall of the house. Sunlight passes easily through the transparent insulation and falls on the absorber which subsequently re- radiates some of this light energy as heat. Heat energy is not transmitted through the insulator, but is retained and conducted through the wall into the house. Photographed in Tiengen, Germany.
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