RavenBrick Earns Patent Approval; Materials to be Installed in "America's Greenest Building"
January 22, 2010

The U.S. Patent Office has issued a notice of allowance to Denver-based RavenBrick for all 54 of its patent claims for the RavenWindow solar heat blocking window filter technology, a system installed by insulating glass fabricators during the fabrication process. The company produces what it says is the industry's only automated, intelligent, market-ready window filter, which automatically blocks solar heat when the outside temperature is too hot, while allowing solar heat inside when the outside temperature is cold. The smart-window filters use no electricity, wiring or control systems and can reduce energy costs and consumption by as much as 50 percent, while also reducing overheating, drafting and glare to make for comfortable interior spaces.

"We are obviously pleased to receive a perfect score on the allowance notice for the RavenWindow-ER technology, and that it was achieved in just nine short months," says Alex Burney, RavenBrick chief executive officer. "I view this as a clear indicator that our technology is highly valued by builders and building owners who appreciate energy efficiency and cost reductions. Now we have the sole right to manufacture and market this technology."

While a number of different types of dynamic glazing materials are currently available, Burney tells USGNN.com™ that his company's product, which has been in development for about two years, is different compared to others.

"Typically [other products are] electrochromic, which are driven by electrical power. We call [ours] active-passive. It's active in the sense that it does the change, and it's passive in the sense that it does it without having any moving parts," says Burney. "Ours is a thermochromic device so it's a filter that goes into a standard insulating glass unit and it reacts much like tinted sunglasses. We set the filter to transition at a given temperature, let's say 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and when the glass gets to that temperature it automatically switches to its tinting mode to reflect out the solar heat gain."

He adds, that with some other types of dynamic window systems the up-front cost is so excessive that it's a challenge to see the energy saving payback.

"With our product, because there are no wires, it's actually fairly inexpensive in comparison so end users can get a return on investment of about five to seven years. We're a green company by accident; we're really a financially prudent company. We didn't want to launch a product for the sake of being green; it needed to make end-user sense," says Burney.

With the approval of the patents, Burney says the company plans to continue forming agreements with glass manufacturers that incorporate the filter into their windows for commercial developments. He adds that the first product installation will be the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) headquarters in Golden, Colo., which has been called "the greenest building in America."

"The NREL headquarters needs to be a zero-usage energy building, and our window products are going on one of the floors in the building," says Burney, who adds that they are working with Arch Aluminum & Glass on the project.

"Arch is always on the lookout for new technology and it's been a pleasure and honor to work with RavenBrick on their development," says Steve Perilstein, vice president of sales for Arch Aluminum & Glass. "We are excited to be involved as we know that technology like RavenBrick's is crucial to the advancement of supplying the most energy efficient options available."

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