Laminated BIPV glass: approaches for the integration in the building skin

Saretta, Erika and Frontini, Francesco and Bonomo, Pierluigi (2016) Laminated BIPV glass: approaches for the integration in the building skin. In: Engineered Transparency 2016: Glass in Architecture and Structural Engineering Engineered Transparency.

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When integrating PV cells in glass based building elements to form a laminated BIPV glass, the requirements on construction safety and the mechanical behaviour are particularly significant and higher than in conventional PV plants. When installed in facades, laminated BIPV glass can be installed with different mounting structures and fixing configurations that should ensure mechanical safety and adequate operational conditions (e.g. adequate resistance preventing excessive deflec-tions) along with the safety of users indoor or outside the building. However, so far, the BIPV glass elements are mainly tested as conventional PV products in accordance with the IEC 61215:2005. In detail, in order to assess the mechanical ability to withstand wind and/or snow loads, a standard load test is performed with a pass/fail criteria based on the absence of electrical damages rather than on the assessment of the static behaviour and the limit states for safety and/or operation. For example, the deflections are not evaluated in this approach even though they are an important parameter to check, especially where glass is used as primary building skin such as in case of curtain walls. This paper includes the evaluation of the deflections of laminated BIPV glass ele-ments resulting from the IEC mechanical testing, including the comparison with the limit states prescribed in the Eurocode and other recommendations for laminated glass to be used in buildings.

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