Optical sensor integration in architectural glass


  • Shahryar Nategh
  • Jan Belis (supervisor)
  • Jeroen Missinne (supervisor)


Over the past years, size and number of glass panels in buildings increased substantially. As glass strength is known to reduce over time as a function of e.g. the load history, it is important to know its evolution over the design lifetime. In this project, the objective is to fabricate invisible optical sensors, Bragg grating waveguide (BGW), enabling monitoring of architectural glass without jeopardizing its transparency. The investigated method uses laser technology to write invisible optical sensors, able to capture both strain and temperature by modifying the bulk of the glass (see Fig.: Bragg grating sensing principle). Bulk modification by laser is known for glasses used at small scales in e.g. micro-electronics, but is novel for soda-lime silica glass used at large scales in construction. In addition, with a view to next generation smart facades, the technology will be implemented on the thin chemically pre-stressed glass (aluminosilicate), which is lightweight and more resistant against scratches. Afterward, the impact of the integrated sensors on the strength of the glass will be examined using some flexural tests. In the final stage of the project, two glass components, one made of soda-lime silica and the other made of thin chemically pre-stressed aluminosilicate glass, both equipped with sensors, will be tested to demonstrate the technique’s functionality.

Graphical abstract Shahryar Nategh


Partner CMST Shahryar NateghPartner imec Shahryar Nategh


Funding FWO Shahryar Nategh