During the first decades of the last century, masonry constructions, realized with traditional materials, have been replaced by buildings of new generation that, symbols of industrialization, were realized with industrialized constructive techniques . Unfortunately, most of these buildings, characterized by the use of synthetic materials, show signs of physical and technological degradation. Technological weaknesses, associated with an exasperated research of a better lifestyle and with design choices that are not appropriate, are the cause of the increase of energy requirement for cooling and heating. This has negative effects, not just in term of energy consumption, but also in term of pollution and appearance of buildings. In fact, the fronts of the buildings of the latest generation, already characterized by their physical degradation, are frequently covered by air conditioners. So, the aesthetic degradation of buildings is closely related both to characteristics of constructive materials that to thermal performances of the building envelope. A sustainable rehabilitation project is not just a mere cosmetic change, but it must correspond to an improvement in the quality of living. Rehabilitating pre-existing buildings means optimizing their performances by different points of view: aesthetic, energetic and functional. This paper shows some results of a research on sustainable envelopes able to control solar and thermal flow and to improve aesthetic quality also with the utilize of traditional material. These solutions of envelope can be used to energetic and aesthetic refurbishment of modern heritage buildings.
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