Move over glass windows, something even more old school than you could be back in fashion. A new paper
in Advanced Energy Materials
finds that windows made of transparent wood could provide better energy efficiency than glass, while eliminating glare and providing uniform and consistent indoor lighting.
The process starts with bleaching from the wood all of the lignin, which is a component in the wood that makes it both brown and strong. The wood is then soaked in epoxy, which adds strength back in and also makes the wood clearer. The team has used tiny squares of linden wood about 2 cm x 2 cm, but the wood can be any size, the researchers said.