Ball State University,
Keywords: green building, building materials, nanotechnology
Summary:Ten years ago, demand for nanomaterials in the U.S. construction industry totaled less than $20 million Today, demand exceeds one billion dollars per year. Hundreds of companies offer nanomaterials for green building?in paints, sealants, wallboard, solar panels and more. Self-cleaning windows, smog-eating concrete, and toxin-sniffing nanosensors are all on the market. Recent advances in nanotechnology are contributing to building energy conservation and on-site renewable energy, reducing dependence on non-renewable resources. Other products still in development offer even more promise for dramatically improving the environmental and energy performance of buildings. Photovoltaic windows, roofing and façade panels now entering the market, for example, could turn future buildings into enormous solar collectors. The development of photocatalytic coatings points to a future of self-cleaning buildings, and advances in nanoscale adhesives may make building materials self-healing. This presentation offers a survey of where nanotechnology has transformed architecture, where it has failed to deliver, and where it is going.