The Three Main Types Of Smart Glass

Smart glass, also called switchable glass, is a type of glass that can change its transparency or color when heat or electricity is applied to the glass. This allows you to customize the aesthetic of your home extremely easily, and also eliminates the needs for curtains or blinds while still providing a great degree of privacy. Smart glass can be broadly grouped into three main categories, all of which perform the same function but do so in different ways. Understanding what each type of smart glass has to offer can help you choose the one that best fits your home's needs.

Suspended Particle Device

Suspended particle device smart glass is made out of two panes of glass that have light absorbent particles trapped, or 'suspended,' between them. When electricity is applied to the window panes, the particles realign themselves to let light into your home. The more electricity that is applied, the greater the amount of light that can enter your home, which allows you to customize how much light you want a room to receive. It takes a few seconds for suspended particle device smart glass to switch between blocking and allowing light through.

Liquid Crystal

Liquid crystal smart glass is very similar to suspended particle device smart glass, in that an electric current applied to the window will allow light in. However, liquid crystal smart glass changes extremely quickly from blocking to allowing light, and does not offer the same degree of customization that suspended particle device smart glass does. Either all light is let through a liquid crystal window, or none is. This means that they are best suited for applications where privacy is the main concern, as a liquid crystal smart glass window can quickly transition from a window to a wall with the flick of a switch.


Electrochromic smart glass does not operate in the same way as the other types. When electricity is applied to electrochromic glass, it will darken, and when the current is taken away, they will lighten. Additionally, electrochromic glass is able to block out certain wavelengths of light, which means you can make electrochromic glass appear a certain color if you so wish, giving you a plethora of interior decoration options to work with. Electrochromic windows take much longer than either suspended particle device or liquid crystal smart glass windows to transition between states, but they do not need to have a current applied to them after they have made the transition.

For more information on which type of smart glass would be best for you, contact a professional company like J & J Aluminum & Vinyl Products.