This post originally appeared on glassmagazine.com
The year is 2040 and my grandson asks me, “Grandpa, what do you mean glass didn’t tint automatically when you were a kid? Geez you had it rough! You mean you had to sit behind windows that made you hot and you couldn’t see out to enjoy the view because there was too much glare?”
Maybe you’re reading this and thinking, this isn’t going to happen—dynamic window products won’t become the norm—because the technology and the products cost too much. Maybe it’s durability? Or maybe you think it’s complicated to install? However, if you are older than 30, then ask yourself this: “If I could go back in time and invest in a bottled water company, would I do it?”
I can vividly remember my dad telling me what a dumb idea it was for people to bottle water when it was already available for free out of drinking faucets everywhere. He told me no one will pay a dollar for something they can have for free, and besides, if they want it in a bottle they can fill it up at home before they leave. Yet just yesterday, I bought a whole case to put in my refrigerator.
Think about the first cell phones. They were huge and they only made phone calls, nothing else. The coverage area was very limited and the cost was sky high. Now my kids have smart phones with apps galore. They video chat with groups of friends all at the same time. They search the web and so much more and it is all relatively inexpensive. My wife feels better knowing she can get a hold of them whenever she wants to.
Over the last decade, I have witnessed an amazing transformation in glass. We now have a whole new category of glazing products that are dynamic—from self-tinting dynamic glass, electrically switching dynamic glass to dynamic kinetic façade exteriors.
Yes, the companies manufacturing these products have had their struggles. But, all of them have great people who have worked tirelessly to solve issues and overcome great obstacles. The quality of dynamic glass has never been better and we have never had so many options and choices as we have today. The price has been steadily coming down. And, the use of these products in tandem with other technologies like BIPV and automated LED lighting systems, is propelling us into the future. Dynamic glass makes the lighting systems and the HVAC systems perform better. The ability to conserve energy, provide comfort and be stylish can co-exist with the all these products.
Perhaps someday in the not too distant future, you can tell your grandkids that you were there at the forefront of a movement in glass and architecture, when glazing became dynamic.
Chad Simkins is vice president of Pleotint and vice president of sales for Thompson IG. He can be reached at csimkins [at] pleotint.com.
There are many advantages to utilizing natural daylight, but there also can be some drawbacks without planning ahead. For example, more glass surface area can lead to increased glare, as well as heating and cooling needs. In addition, ultraviolet rays from sunlight can fade flooring, artwork and furniture. Luckily, high-performance windows with low-e glass and a dynamic component—such as self-tinting Suntuitive glass—can optimize daylight by reducing unwanted glare and ultraviolet light, while also limiting solar heat gain in summer months and preventing heat loss in winter months.
As natural daylight fills spaces, we rely less on artificial lighting. Still, in the evenings and at night, electric lighting is the only source of illumination. However, newer light bulb technologies—such as LED or compact fluorescent—are better options than the incandescent bulbs of the past. Also, there are now switches that can automatically turn lights on or off as people enter or exit a room.
The key is finding the correct balance of natural light, supplemented with artificial light as needed.
To discuss how Suntuitive Glass can help balance your daylighting strategy, visit www.Suntuitive.com or call 616.662.7216.
Earlier this month we attended the AIA Convention in Atlanta. Here are some of our takeaways from the show.
The big thing we noticed at the convention this year was it seemed like more attendees than ever before were aware of dynamic glass. Instead of the focus being on what dynamic glass is, it was on the possibilities surrounding dynamic glass.
Going along with this theme of the possibilities around dynamic glass, the two most common questions we received at the convention were:
However, we did find that many people are still confused about the differences between dynamic glass technologies. This blog post discusses the differences between the two major dynamic glass technologies, thermochromic, which Suntuitive is, and electrochromic.
Overall, we had a great time at AIA Convention and in Atlanta, and can’t wait for next year’s show in Philadelphia!
“We considered using permanently tinted windows, fritted glass, and mechanical shades, but Suntuitive glass offered the advantages of each without any compromises,” Ockaskis explained. “The glass naturally adjusts to provide the perfect tint to counteract outside conditions, while allowing the glass to be clear at night.”
Martin Betz, chief operating officer for Goodrich Quality Theaters, said the company’s goal was to create excitement and recapture the market by replacing a 40-year-old multiplex adjacent to the site with a new, energy-efficient building.
“Being a theater, visual experiences play a major role in our daily business,” Betz said. “It all starts in our lobby, where we welcome guests. We wanted a glass façade so that passersby could see the architecture and activity going on inside the building, but at the same time, we wanted the lobby to be a comfortable space with abundant natural daylight.
“Suntuitive glass was new to us, but after operating the theater through winter and summer, I’m happy to say the self-tinting glass has been a complete success, exceeding our expectations,” Betz said. “It has helped us control our utility costs and added to the contemporary design of our building.”
Have any questions? Let us know in the comment section.
Dynamic windows featuring Suntuitive glass were on display at a private residence in Jenison, Michigan, during the 2014 Grand Rapids Spring Parade of Homes. Located on Cedar Lake, the 4,000-square-foot property was built by Celebrity Builders, LLC.
According to Rob Vis, co-owner of Celebrity Builders, the home was designed to inspire relaxation with its open floor plan and soothing atmosphere.
“In addition to being highly energy-efficient, this home was designed for carefree, comfortable living,” he said. “The lake is to the west, and the sun’s heat is almost unbearable on summer afternoons. That’s why we selected Pleotint’s Suntuitive glass. In addition to being produced by a local company, the unique, self-tinting glass adapts throughout the day without any controls or having to close the blinds as often.”
Celebrity Builders installed low-e insulating windows by JELD-WEN with Suntuitive glass on the home’s west- and south-facing elevations, which are exposed to the most solar heat gain.
“The homeowners say the best part is they can watch their kids play on the beach or the boat, while they have a perfect view from the cool house,” Vis added.
The home was one of the most talked about and most popular stops during the Parade of Homes. Of the more than 3,000 visitors that toured the home, many said they came to see the self-tinting windows after reading about them in Grand Rapids Press and on MLive.com. In addition, the home won two Awards of Excellence: Best Floor Plan and Best Curb Appeal.
We also recently received word that Celebrity Builders has secured orders for two additional homes based on this model, and the homeowner requested dynamic windows featuring Suntuitive glass.
Have any questions? Leave them in the comment section!
Windows are your connection to the outdoors and protection from its elements. While environmental conditions can be unpredictable, you should not have to compromise between comfort and view.
If it’s time for new windows, how do you choose between all the different options? Here are three reasons why you should consider dynamic windows featuring Suntuitive glass for your home.
Use them anywhere
Suntuitive glass can be used in windows of any shape or size—including picture, bay, casement, double-hung, skylight, patio doors, etc.—and in most frames, including vinyl, wood, aluminum, and fiberglass. What’s more, there are no wires or controls to worry about. Suntuitive glass naturally tints throughout the day, providing worry-free comfort and views.
Save money on energy
Suntuitive glass works with low-e glass in insulating units to help save money on energy costs, effectively paying for themselves overtime. The self-tinting windows will block out the sun’s intense heat on sunny days and prevent furnace heat from escaping on cold days, so there’s no need to constantly adjust your furnace, A/C, blinds, and drapes.
Protect your family and furnishings
Suntuitive glass helps improve your home’s security. Because the self-tinting technology is incorporated into laminated glass, it holds glass fragments together in scenarios where it would normally shatter, such as forced entry or an impact from a stray baseball. Also, while natural daylight can brighten up a space, sunlight contains damaging ultraviolet rays that are responsible for fading furniture, paintings, and carpet. But, with Suntuitive glass, these harmful rays are blocked out, preserving your furnishings.
Whether you are looking for new or replacement windows, Suntuitive glass will preserve the view you want from your windows, while providing the comfort you deserve in your home—without compromise. For more information, read our brochure or leave a comment.
In this blog, the staff at Pleotint is playing the role of “mythbusters,” and debunking three common myths about thermochromic glass.
Dynamic glass is all the rage in the glass industry, and for good reason. Not only can dynamic glass cut energy use and save money, it can also make living and working spaces more comfortable.
Right now, most commercially available dynamic windows are based on two technologies: passive (thermochromic) and active (electrochromic). Here are a few pros and cons for each, along with brief descriptions of how they work:
Thermochromic windows gradually darken in response to rising temperatures caused by direct sunlight, then cool as the sun moves across the sky, returning to a clear, neutral state in cloudy or dark environmental conditions. An example of this is the Suntuitive interlayer, which is made from a polyvinyl butyral (PVB) film that is laminated between two panes of heat-strengthened or tempered glass and incorporated into an insulated glass unit (IGU).
Electrochromic windows change color in response to electrical stimulation. When a voltage is applied to the multilayer electrochromic coating on the glass, ions migrate between layers causing the color of the coating to change. The higher the voltage applied the darker the glass tints.
If you have questions about the different dynamic glass technologies and how they can improve your home or office, give us a call at 616.662.7216.
Windows are your view to the outside world, and are an integral part of your home or office’s design and efficiency. So, it’s important that they are working the best that they can for you. Unfortunately, older windows are notoriously inefficient and do not have the low-e coatings, gas-filled cavities, or dynamic components that can be found on the market today.
If you’re starting to doubt the performance of your windows, ask yourself some questions. Is your home or office hot in the summer and cold in the winter? Is it difficult to maintain a consistent indoor temperature? Do you feel a draft, or hear howling when it’s windy outside? Are your windows painted shut? Are they single-pane?
If you answered yes to any of these, then it may be time to upgrade. Not only can new windows resolve these issues, but they also provide you with a multitude of other benefits. For example, new windows:
Are you looking for new windows, or do you have some questions? Let us know. We’d like to help you put the view back into your windows!
Have you ever looked out of a window and wondered if there was a better way to control solar heat gain, glare, and sunlight, rather than installing permanently tinted glass or blinds? Dynamic glass is the answer.
There are several dynamic glass technologies on the market, but the two that you’re most likely to encounter are passive (thermochromic), which adapts naturally to changing environmental conditions, and active (electrochromic), which uses electrical intervention to tint. Our Suntuitive interlayer falls under the thermochromic category.
While the dynamic glass industry has been around for a while, it has only recently started to gain popularity. One of the biggest obstacles facing the industry is the cost-prohibitive nature of the technology, but new advances in manufacturing and funding are lowering the costs. Despite the upfront investment, green building professionals are recognizing the many benefits of dynamic glass and are incorporating it in homes, offices, and even retail stores. Here are just a few of the benefits:
Put the view in
You put windows in a wall to be able to see outside. Dynamic glass enhances that experience by optimizing indoor comfort, views, and daylighting, while blocking heat generated from sunlight, glare, and ultraviolet light without obtrusive window shades or other sun-blocking devices.
Go green, save green
When paired with low-e glass in an insulating glass unit, windows featuring a dynamic component, such as our Suntuitive interlayer, help lower heating-, cooling-, and lighting-related energy costs. What’s more, because you reduce the load on the HVAC equipment, you usually can reduce the size and cost of the unit.
No special requirements
With all that dynamic glass has to offer, you’d think installation is complicated. In reality, installing windows featuring our Suntuitive interlayer is the same as any other traditional window system.
Here at Pleotint, we want to help you put the view back in your windows. To learn more about the benefits of dynamic glass, visit our website.
Dynamic Insights Blog
A blog for the latest happenings and general information about the dynamic glass industry including topics on daylighting, energy efficiency and green building tips