Solar shading - without stripes

The fact that the characteristic stripes where the steel membrane was glued to the glass can now be avoided - is the result of several years of product development and laboratory work. In addition to removing the stripes, the development has also contributed with a more competitive price point, says CSO, Christian Lygum.

The technology within the pane
The protection from the sun in both the new and the existing insulating glass units works according to the same principle. Protected inside the insulating glass unit, a thin film with numerous small holes is applied. MicroShade calls this structure micro-lamellas - because it has the same function as typical lamellas since it provides shade from the sun on hot summer days. The holes in the film are made so that the sun's rays can pass through the panes when the sun is low (in winter) but are blocked when the sun is high in the sky. This offers a number of benefits; In winter, when the sun's radiation is not bothersome or contributes to overtemperatures, the radiation is let inside the building. The panes therefore have a higher g-value in winter than in summer. In addition, you will find that even though a windowpane is in direct sunlight in the summer, it is possible to sit right next to the façade and still be shaded from the sun. This is because the micro-structure blocks its direct radiation.

The new solar shading solution
The new panes, that have just recently been introduced to the market, will be made with a foil that is rolled onto the glass. This means that the characteristic stripes disappear entirely, while at the same time the micro-structure has an even better adhesion to the glass. By switching to the micro-structure being built into a foil, much larger surfaces can be achieved without joints - and that any joints become much narrower and much less visible.

The foil can be mounted in sizes up to 1500 x 2450mm without joints. Any joints will have a width of about 0.5-1.0 mm. The new film also eliminates the slightly shimmering reflection that could be seen in the previous solution.

The experience of the reflection from windows with the new micro-structure will therefore be just like the reflection from an insulating glass unit, says Christian Lygum. 

Picture: From the inside, the solar shading solution is hardly visible. The streak of light that can be perceived in the middle of the pane is due to the fact that the panes are made on a test machine that cannot mount the foil in full width - thereby making the joints necessary.

In the picture, the joints are closer together than what will be seen in new panes. The reason is, that these panes have been made on a test machine which is only capable of mounting foils of maximum 300mm width.

New technology also means a better price 
It is not only in terms of the adhesion and the visual appeal that there is a difference between the old product and the new. The manufacturing process has also become both easier and simpler. Therefore, MicroShade expects to be able to reduce the price of their solution. The price reduction will take place as the window manufacturers get the new machines set up and adapted for production. At present, 1 sqm window with solar shading micro-structures will cost approximately DKK 3,000, and it is expected that this will level out at approximately DKK 2,650 per square meter, according to Christian Lygum. 

The old solution 
The arrival of a new product also means a goodbye to the old and well-known solution. The panes with the characteristic stripes for every 14 centimeters are therefore discontinued. It is expected that from the spring of 2021, only panes with the new foil will be delivered for new projects. However, it will be possible to reorder panes produced with the old method - e.g. for repairs.

Top photo: The panes on the ground floor have been replaced. As can be seen from the pictures, it is not possible to detect that the windows are now fitted with a solar shading solution.

SOURCE: GLAS, 1/21 - text by Mikkel Thomsen

17 June 2021