Thermal comfort is an indoor environmental factor that has a strong effect on the health and well-being of a building’s residents. A room’s operating temperature and relative humidity determine the overall comfort conditions, as our bodies are sensitive to variations in temperature or air velocity.
Thermal energy is mainly transferred by conduction, radiation, or convection. Although the human body has a regulatory system that constantly balances heat exchanges with the environment, a comfortable indoor environment limits our efforts to adjust our body temperature. Thus, it is essential to ensure a balanced thermal environment for good health and concentration to avoid potential accidents that high or low temperatures can cause.
Nowadays, buildings face extreme weather events related to climate change, which makes it more difficult to maintain appropriate levels of thermal comfort. These concerns must be incorporated into the building design to keep the inside cool or warm depending on the weather.
Thus, the key to improving the thermal comfort of a building is by establishing an airtight envelope combined with natural or mechanical ventilation. The building envelope can control the amount of heat allowed to enter the building through thermal insulation. Thermal inertia is also important as the choice of materials affects the climate conditions inside.
How do we act?
At Saint-Gobain Glass, we offer a large range of glass solutions to optimise the climate control indoors of any kind of building, in all climates. Our solutions are based on thin films called coatings which are applied on the glass substrate, to manage the heat, light and solar energy transmitted through the glass.
Our low-e coatings improve thermal insulation and ensure a positive energy balance by reducing the heat transfer (expressed by the Ug-value) while maximizing the daylight and solar heat gain. Our low-e range comprising the PLANITHERM® and ECLAZ® glass products offers the best compromise between Ug-value, light transmission and solar factor. They meet the highest requirements in terms of energy efficiency, comfort, and transparency.
Our solar control coatings allow sunlight to enter the building through the glazing while reflecting the heat outside and filtering light for reduced glare. Our solar control range COOL-LITE® composed of a large variety of different coatings is designed to meet the requirements for the façade of all architectural projects whatever their characteristics and location. They cover a large scale of solar factor, aesthetics, light transmission and reflection. The premium products of this range, under the name of COOL-LITE® XTREME provide the highest selectivity value, up to 2.2. The higher the selectivity, the more light and the less energy the glass transmits.
Additionally, we have developed a new offer of dynamic glass. SAGEGLASS® is an innovative solution to provide both comfort and aesthetic elements while cutting down energy use. How? Our smart facades can adjust the light transmission into a room without needing any stores. They are controlled by an intelligent system that uses sensors and algorithms to automatically change the level of solar glare depending on the lighting conditions outside. The level of heat and solar glare can be controlled automatically or manually to guarantee well-being indoors. Occupants will be able to create the perfect indoor environment by optimizing the temperature inside all while reducing their energy consumption.