In principle thermochromic and thermotropic systems can function as energy saving systems. For high temperatures, during summertime thermochromic coatings have the ability to reflect solar energy, reducing the surface’s temperature; while in wintertime absorb solar energy, increasing the surface’s temperature as reversible color change takes place. Applied thus on external building surfaces, they have the potential for the reduction of heating and cooling loads, contributing to the reduction of urban temperatures, fight heat island and reduce air pollution. Color-changing compounds have become increasingly important in recent years in the study and the production of thermochromic coatings that is coatings which respond thermally to their environment, changing reversibly their color from darker to lighter tones as temperature rises.

  The novelty comes from the use concomitant of thermotropic hydrogels which respond thermally by changing transparency from total transparent to translucent. Combining these features of termotropic hydrogels and thermochromic dyes we can obtain complex thermosensitive systems that respond to an increase in temperature by switching the color hypsochromically while accompanied by a change in transparency of the hydrogels. During the project we intend to develop thermosensitive energy saving coatings that action on the entire Vis-NIR range and are most typically applied to roofs but additionally can also be applied to exterior and interior walls in much the same way. Thermosensitive coatings that will aim to obtain change reflectivity and color as a function of temperature, present enhanced weathering and durability and may be in any suitable formulation for application on roofs or walls such as water-based, oil-based, epoxy-based or acrylic-based formulations.

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