Making the most of the natural light available
Electric Roller Shutter
The building was previously a warehouse where forklifts would access via a large shutter door. Before building the mezzanine needed to accommodate new offices and meeting room, the old shutter was replaced with an electric roller shutter and a glass wall was placed behind it. The glass wall lets in daylight both upstairs and downstairs. The windows have minimal thermal bridging and the glass is filled with argon to make them more thermally efficient.
Using LED lights controlled by a KNX based system integrated into the BMS in combination with natural daylighting, we achieved a very low energy light control system. All circuits are fitted with lux and presence sensors. When a person walks into a room, the lights come on at the level required to make up for the light that is deficient from the natural daylight. There are no light switches fitted in the building, eliminating the need for people to remember to switch off the lights when they leave the room.
To improve the daylighting, we formed light wells below the translucent roof panels and had custom double glazed units made which were built into the ceiling and sealed. The obscured glass allowed for daylight harvesting, without the view of the corrugated sheets.
The use of glass walls internally to separate office spaces allows for natural light to filter through the building and also creates visual connections making staff feel like everyone is accessible, visible and available. It reduces noise levels while maintaining an open plan feel. People generally like to work in discrete cells, while also maintaining a sense of community.
Electric roller blinds open and close automatically depending on the position of the sun. This maximises the amount of solar gain achieved while also maximising the use of available daylighting.
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