June 3, 2020
Birds play an integral role in preserving the world’s ecosystem – dispersing seeds, pollinating plants, and controlling rodent populations. By consuming enormous amounts of insects, birds also reduce insect damage to crops and forests and lower the transmission of diseases such as malaria and West Nile virus. But as the built environment expands, so does the danger to birds. Since 1970, scientists have tracked a nearly 30% decline in North American bird populations with about 25% of species now being listed on the US Watch List of birds that require conservation to avoid becoming threatened or endangered. And one of the leading contributors to this continued drop in bird populations is collisions with human construction.
May 4, 2020
Employee compensation is often one of a company’s largest operational costs; and given the high percentage of revenue that it consumes, it is only sensible that an employer seeks to optimize that investment by improving staff productivity. An unengaged, unproductive staff member can cost a company thousands of dollars in lost time and revenue. Unfortunately, lack of productivity remains a common complaint among office workers with only 13 percent of respondents feeling engaged in their work according to Gallup statistics . The good news, however, is that many of the causes behind a lack of productivity - including drowsiness, physical discomfort, and emotional distractions - can be mitigated with a daily dose of natural daylight in the workplace.
April 13, 2020
Given that a large fraction of greenhouse gas emissions are the result of burning fossil fuels to produce electricity, one of the most significant steps a company can take towards a sustainable future is curbing its electricity use. Fortunately, one of the largest consumers of electricity is also one of the most easily replaced.
March 11, 2020
The privacy and savings provided by translucent panel systems make them a strategic solution for daylighting water treatment plants, pump stations, and other municipal facilities that house large equipment. By limiting views of the building’s interior from the outside, translucent daylighting keeps the facility and its equipment private and protected from trespassers who are unable to see who or what is inside. This added security may be especially important for pump stations or other buildings that are frequently left unattended.
February 19, 2020
The ability to control natural daylight enhances any athletic facility, from recreational to professional sports. Providing glare-free, full-spectrum light is ideal for videography, mental focus and visual acuity. Kalwall® translucent sandwich panels have been a preferred choice of athletic facilities large and small because of their ability to couple museum-quality daylighting™, with increased visual privacy and protection from the elements. Here are five athletic facilities across the globe where Kalwall® translucent sandwich panels have been used to provide the right diffuse natural daylighting solution.
February 7, 2020
Incorporating colored insulation into your daylighting design can illuminate a space with bright, vibrant hues as the sun shines through! This Spectra-Grid™ application is perfect for creating a stained glass look or showcasing school or company colors. Click HERE for more information on this eye-catching visual effect!
November 29, 2019
Belief in the sun’s power to influence physical performance dates back to the first Olympic athletes of ancient Greece who were required to routinely bathe in the sunlight in preparation for competition; and as more studies on the subject emerge, it is becoming increasingly evident how based in fact this belief really is. Recent research has now confirmed the sun’s role in everything from reducing the risk of sports-related injuries and regulating the release of muscle-building hormones like testosterone to developing healthy sleep habits and improving reflexes. And as more athletic competitions move to indoor gymnasiums, arenas, and practice facilities, it is more important than ever that athletes have access to the abundant advantages of natural daylight during indoor workouts as well.
November 4, 2019
Major's Guardian 275® Hurricane Systems make it possible to protect your building from the damage of natural disasters without sacrificing the benefits of natural daylight.
October 4, 2019
In an urban age when most waking hours are spent indoors, Biophilic design strives to satisfy the innate human tendency to hunt for and associate with the natural ingredients for human health and survival. People have evolved to instinctively associate with the natural features and processes that, though no longer as relevant to survival, contribute to their livelihood and well-being – and few things were and continue to be as integral to human health as the sun. The sun a source of both light and warmth, we have become biologically encoded to seek out its rays; and more than that, our body also relies on the sun to stimulate Vitamin D production and regulate the body’s daily rhythms.
September 6, 2019
Glass has been used as the portal to the outdoors for centuries. But times are changing.
In a world where we are becoming more aware of the environmental effects of structures and people’s changing needs, architects and other industry professionals are concerned that glass no longer adequately addresses these key building factors:
- Energy Efficiency
- Safety & Privacy
September 4, 2019
Children need sunlight; and because most children and adolescents spend the majority of their daylight hours in school, it’s important that students have access to sunlight by incorporating daylighting systems into classroom design. Exposure to natural light not only contributes to a student’s physical well-being by boosting their daily intake of Vitamin D, but also enriches their mental health by regulating the Circadian Rhythm and the release of influential hormones that, for adolescents in particular, can be difficult to manage on their own. Studies show these students sleep better, think more positively, concentrate longer, and miss fewer days of school due to illness. Studies also show that happier, healthier children perform better academically; and by diffusing daylight through halls and classrooms, schools can improve test scores, support student well-being, reallocate saved energy costs for school supplies and other needs, and promote sustainability.
August 5, 2019
When Carver Public Schools in Massachusetts looked to replace two older school buildings with one new facility to house students pre-K through 5th grade, they sought the help of HMFH Architects to assist them in designing an energy-efficient and vibrant learning space. What resulted is the new Carver Elementary School, a more than 110,000 square foot learning space that was 1 of 5 schools nationwide to receive a “Citation of Excellence” from Learning by Design Magazine.
March 25, 2019
The creative use of metal has become a modern design and construction trend. In addition to advantages such as recyclability and versatility, the aesthetic created by incorporating metal is a big reason for the increased use. Here are four ways Draper helps you incorporate the metallic look into a building, while also dealing with glare and solar heat gain as part of an overall daylighting strategy:
February 25, 2019
Privacy vs. daylighting: Who says you have to choose? Balancing the need for privacy with the positives of natural light doesn’t have to mean choosing one or the other. Here are four ways you can have privacy and enjoy the benefits of daylighting in the same window opening.
February 8, 2019
Introducing diffuse natural daylighting into a retail space has proven to increase sales and productivity. Full spectrum, glare-free daylight encourages consumers to spend more time shopping by creating a better mood and allowing products to be seen in sharper detail. The bottom line benefit extends to any commercial building: From reducing energy costs to increasing employee production, a space enhanced by diffuse natural daylighting increases in value per square foot. Here are five retail/commercial projects across the globe where Kalwall translucent sandwich panels have been used to provide a diffuse natural daylighting solution.
November 16, 2018
Curators and collectors continually struggle with the age old dilemma of how to find the right lighting for works of art without risking undue damage. The problem with direct sunlight and artificial light is that they cause damage not only through exposure to light (photochemical action), but from solar heat gain. The result of both will lead to the deterioration of art through cracking, brittleness and change in color. The solution for many museums and galleries are translucent skylights.
October 19, 2018
Designing the look and feel of a building’s daylighting is a delicate balance of considerations. Primary among them is how solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) affects a fenestration system, including wall systems and skylights. Deciding how much solar radiation to allow through glazing or translucent sandwich panels requires answering the following questions:
October 17, 2018
As demographics and preferences across multifamily shift, AIA partner Kawneer explores how architects are adjusting their exterior designs.
October 3, 2018
In honor of the Halloween season, we thought we'd take a look at some "scary" daylighting stories that have been floating around the construction world. Sadly, these two questions seem to be the most discussed, but we're here to set the record straight!
September 10, 2018
Daylight modeling brings science to the art of daylighting. Remove the design mystery and reveal patterns of daylight with complimentary modeling services.