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When clear glazing is not clear cut

Clear glazing has been most commonly specified in rooflight solutions over the years and has, in the main, fulfilled the requirements of installers and end users.

However, as technological advancements have been made and awareness has increased as to the impact buildings have on the wellbeing of its users, leading rooflight manufacturer Xtralite is challenging the specification in applications such as workplaces and educational establishments where lighting can influence, positively and negatively, behaviours and wellbeing of building users such as concentration and vision.

“The demands on a modern day classroom or workplace have increased considerably as  appreciation of building design continues to evolve,” said Jim Lowther sales director Xtralite. “Installing clear glazing above work stations , desks or any other areas can create massive contrasts between light and dark , resulting in glare from the work surface. Diffused glazing will distribute better quality light across the room resulting in a more comfortable, and consequently productive, environment.”

The benefits of natural light on wellbeing is far reaching and as such it is important that natural light opportunities are maximised in educational and work places establishments. It has been proven to boost serotonin levels (the happy hormone) and also aid concentration enhancing productivity. The National Association of Rooflight Manufacturers (NARM) supports the need for natural daylight in buildings and this is reinforced by an American study which found that workers who  received natural daylight enjoyed increased performance levels at work and also slept on average an extra 46 minutes per night compared with workers who were not exposed to any natural light at all.

With this in mind natural lighting and glazing specifications within building design should be given prime consideration to ensure rooflights are installed that negate any potential ‘hot spots’ and diffuse light across the room setting.

It is of course possible to specify the full range of glazing mediums and provide consistant light across the work space. Xtralite can provide Glass Polycarbonate and Lumira Technology installed in either their structural glazing systems or modular rooflights.

Safety also remains of paramount importance as Xtralite’s policy of only using a laminated inner pane of glass , which can be  tinted or coloured if required,  reduces the risk of glass falling into the building should the outer pane shatter, from impact or heat stress. 

Jim concluded; “We actively encourage this type of specification so that building users across commercial and domestic settings reap the benefits of natural light without compromise.”

Further information can be found by visiting www.xtralite.co.uk or by calling 01670 354 157.

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