PV to become the building materials of the future
A new EU-funded project, Construct PV, is working on how to integrate photovoltaic (PV) systems into buildings from their very inception. Rather than panels being placed on roofs, this new technology is being used to replace parts of conventional building materials, such as roofs and facades. Construct PV develops customizable photovoltaic structures for opaque building surfaces for new buildings and buildings undergoing renovation. In addition to the production of electricity, these building-integrated photovoltaic panels are designed to fulfill the typical functions of a building for example to protect it against the weather conditions, to provide insulation, or to enhance its aesthetical aspect. The project includes two large-scale demonstration sites in Stuttgart, Germany and Athens, Greece. In Stuttgart, PV systems are being integrated on the south façade of the five-floor Z3 office building on the Zublin campus which will help it reach the goal of becoming a zero-energy building. The second site, the School of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering of the National Technical University of Athens, a large scale demonstration project is aiming to integrate PV the different types of roof-tops found in Europe. The total cost of the Construct PV project is €11 707 677 including €6 913 100 in EU funding.