One feature on the beleaguered Boeing 787 Dreamliner is its electrochromic dimming system that lets passengers make windows on the aircraft more or less opaque at the touch of a button.
Japan's National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) says that while these smart windows can take about 30 seconds to change, it has a new stick-on window film that can go from reflective to see-through in only 5 seconds.
The switchable mirror device can change states when a low voltage is applied.
The tech can be used to produce low-cost, large-scale smart windows, according to AIST. In contrast to some smart windows, the sheet reflects light instead of absorbing it, preventing the glass from heating up.
Since it reduces incoming heat, the sheet could help keep buildings and vehicles cool in summer, reducing the need for air conditioning as well as electricity.
It takes 10 minutes for the layer to return to a mirror state, but AIST has shown that electrolyzing moisture in the air will fill the sheet with hydrogen, and revert the sheet to a reflective state in 30 seconds.
The sheet was recently shown off at the 11th International Nanotechnology Exhibition & Conference in Tokyo; check out a demo in the vid below.
(Via Akihabara News)