TIME announces best inventions of 2023

by Sophie Berrill
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TIME's Best Inventions of 2023

Invisible solar, carbon-negative cement and smart HVAC are among TIME’s Best Inventions of 2023. 

The news outlet’s annual list recognises 200 products, software and services that are “changing how we live”. The categories range from AI to green energy, accessibility, medical care, fitness and food.

Invisible solar roof tiles

Invisible solar roof tiles from an Italian-based company called Dyaqua earned a spot in the green energy category. 

According to TIME, Dyaqua makes solar tiles that look like traditional terracotta shingles. However, each photovoltaic panel has a surface layer that allows light to pass through to the solar cells beneath. 

Unlike modern-looking glass panels, Dyaqua’s enable solar power at sites that couldn’t otherwise use them for reasons of aesthetics or historical accuracy. 

“Solar panels are banned from Vicenza – as in many places in Italy and in the world,” Dyaqua’s Elisa Quagliato told TIME. 

“Their lack of integration would damage the cultural value of historical buildings.”

There appears to be a growing appetite for incognito solar. Just this month, RMIT University in Melbourne announced it was developing new software that makes it easier to incorporate solar into building designs.

Carbon-negative cement

The 10 best inventions in the sustainability category included carbon-negative cement manufactured by a start-up called Brimstone. 

Cement accounts for eight percent of global carbon emissions, with most emissions coming from its main ingredient, limestone. According to TIME, Brimstone replaced limestone with calcium silicate rock, which is not only far more abundant, but produces a byproduct that absorbs CO2, making the company’s cement effectively carbon negative.

Sensibo’s smart HVAC controller

Sensibo Air Pro, a smart air-conditioning and heat pump controller with indoor air quality monitoring, got a ‘special mention’ on TIME’s list. Sensibo Air Pro turns any ‘dumb’ heating or cooling device to a smart device, which can be controlled from anywhere.

“Sensibo aims to be the brains of every indoor climate system, using data to provide the best comfort, energy efficiency and air quality to every home and office,” says Sensibo CEO Ran Roth.

“Sensibo Air Pro is the world’s first smart AC and heat pump controller with indoor air quality monitoring and we are proud that TIME has awarded it a special mention in the TIME Best Inventions 2023 list”.

TIME's Best Inventions of 2023

View all 200 of TIME’s Best Inventions of 2023

Sensibo’s Airbend, a smart platform for facilities managers, features in the Future-focused Facilities Issue of the Facility Management digital magazine. Grab your free copy

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