Saint-Gobain has launched a second-generation self-cleaning glass called SGG Bioclean. It has a photocatalytic coating that harnesses UV light from the sun to help break down the dirt, making it easier for rainwater to rinse it away. This is in addition to the hydrophilic coating on the SSG Aquaclean glass that causes rain to sheet on the surface to help wash away dirt. The company claims that SGG Bioclean can reduce cleaning up to 50%, and does not compromise the glass' optical properties. The glass is suitable for applications such as curtain walling, glass roofs, doors and windows and atriums. It is available from 4 mm to 10 mm thick, and can be combined in double-glazed units with other products.
Smoother moving dormers
The Manet Concept system of stainless-steel glass fixings has been updated by Dorma UK with the launch of Manet Neu. This includes a new roller fitting for sliding doors with a softer design, and new clamp fittings have been introduced to simplify track installation. Manet Neu has an updated pivoting system, with the pivot point mounted in the centre of the panel to reduce the risk of pinching. The system is now available in 304- and 316-grade stainless steel, suitable for applications with corrosive atmospheres.
Low-maintenance windows and doors
Andersen Windows has introduced a range of architectural windows and external doors for residential and commercial properties. Made from timber, the windows and doors have aluminium or PVCu exterior cladding for low maintenance. The range includes casement, double hung and awning windows, in either rectangular or arched-top version; the patio doors are also available with arched tops and sidelights. There is a choice of four exterior colours, and interior finishes include pine, oak, mahogany and cherry.
New shutter designs from Eden House include a version with interlocking slats for enhanced security. The new range of aluminium external shutters has horizontal louvres in two styles: the Classic, designed to offer privacy and shade, and the extra-secure Sanctuary style that is ideal for vulnerable windows. Options include bi-folding leaves for large windows, and windows close to each other. The shutters are supplied ready-fitted into a frame, and come in a range of colours.
Appart has produced a door latch designed to reduce installation time and save money. Called Omni latch, it can also be used with "designer" handles in residential properties as it has double internal springs that prevent heavy handles from drooping. The latch is round, so installers need only drill a hole for the body of the latch, and the striker plate is also round for faster installation.
It is available with a reversible privacy latch for bathrooms.
PolyCo has expanded its Polyboard Architectural Profile System to include a range of internal doorsets. The doors are supplied as a kit, complete with a door liner, architrave, hinges and lock. Using PolyCo's fixing system, it should take one person just a few minutes to fit. The doors are supplied ready finished in white or a range of wood grain finishes that are designed to match other products in the Polyboard range.
Over-door air curtain
Heating and ventilation products manufacturer Nordair has launched an overdoor air curtain for retail and commercial premises. Called the AirBloc Commercial, it has optional built-in sirens and emergency lighting for use in the event of a fire. An illuminated back box is also available, so a backlit company logo is visible on the exterior of the building. The high-performance version of the unit has output of 12 m3/s. The units are electrically heated, and a hot-water version will be available later in the year. The AirBloc Commercial comes in 1, 1.5 and 2 m widths, in a choice of colours and finishes.
Spring assisted roller doors
Elero UK has introduced a range of five heavy-duty industrial motors for operating spring assisted roller doors. The motors come with several safety and security features including an automatic cut-out and reverse if an obstacle is detected under the door, automatic closure after 30 seconds and constant switch pressure operation to ensure users are present while the door is moving. The range includes single and three-phase versions with a range of outputs.
All models come with chains for manual operation in case of power failure.
Super-small digital locks
Two-thirds smaller than other programmable locks, IR Security & Safety's Briton Cobra range of digital locks is suitable for new construction and retrofit applications alike. Available for the first time in the UK, the locks can store up to 100 three to eight digit user-codes, and can add or delete users in seconds. The locks also have single-use codes that expire after one operation and a lockout code to prevent other codes from working.
IR Security & Safety
Windows in all shapes and sizes
Windows and doors manufacturer Jeld-Wen has added a new selection of PVCu windows to its Boulton & Paul range, offering them in almost any size and style. Options include opening lights, transoms, mullions and a range of glazing choices. The windows are fully welded, and have thermally efficient low-emmisivity double-glazing units with a 24 mm air gap, and are made from 59 mm-wide profiles. Built-in security includes push-button locking handles and a multipoint shoot-bolt locking mechanism.
Glass with an opaque option
Glass distribution and installation specialist DR Services has introduced a range of glass screens that change from transparent to opaque at the flick of a switch. The screens are fitted with Saint-Gobains' Priva-Lite glass, a laminated glass with a crystal layer sandwiched in the middle. Normally the crystals are randomly scattered, but when an electric current is applied the crystals are polarised; when this happens they line up, and turn the glass opaque. DR Services says the screens are ideal for a range of applications, for example, in shop windows, where the glass can be turned opaque to act as a screen to have an image projected onto it from behind, or switched to clear so shoppers can see the merchandise. The glass can be produced to bulletproof strength for security applications.
Anglian Technical Films has designed a glass film to reduce solar gain and hold the glass together in one piece in the event of vandalism or an explosion. Called RS 20, it has a metallic coating that cuts down on heat gain, and also provides greater privacy for building occupants.
Anglian Technical Films
Wood windows to rival PVCu
Fitzroy Joinery has added to its range of engineered wood windows. The company claims that its prices are competitive with those of PVCu frame manufactures. The argon-filled windows have a U-value of 1.1 W/m2K, which Fitzroy says is lower than any other range of timber windows. The windows are secured by espagnolette locking systems, which are designed to meet Secured by Design standards. Every frame is also treated with three or four coats of paint or stain and have a 3 mm anti-fungal coating. Fitzroy says its range is aimed at housing associations and the education, healthcare and self-build markets.
What’s the spec?
Previously, the site had been a catering college, built in the 1950s and 60s. The project architect, Feilden Clegg Bradley, initially looked at keeping the existing buildings, but decided it was uneconomical to bring them up to 21st-century standards. The end result is this appealing design, conceived with sustainability high on the agenda. Velfac doors and windows were used on these student blocks and feature a whole-unit U-value of 1.5 W/m2K. Velfac was chosen because of a combination of good value and aesthetics: the aluminium windows have thin, unobtrusive frames and feature wooden trim on the inside to give the student rooms a domestic feel. Constrained by a tight budget, the architect added interest to the scheme with timber-clad corners on the end of each block with a large corner window offering views in two directions. The Velfac system fitted the architect’s design concept perfectly.
Client University of Gloucestershire
Architect Feilden Clegg Bradley
Contractor HBG Construction
Structural engineer Whitbybird
M&E engineer WSP
Window and oak cladding contractor Degn Jensen Entreprise
Information pointBBSA safety booklet
The British Blind & Shutter Association has published a 30-page booklet called A Guide to Safe Working Practices. The publication covers topics including safe use of machinery, working at height and with power tools, personal protective equipment and fire precautions.
The British Blind & Shutter Association
Guides to European-compliant hardware
The Association of Building Hardware Manufacturers has added two best practice guides to its range of existing guides. The guides will help specifiers and users select and make the best use of hardware in the light of new European Standards. The first covers BS EN 1906 Lever handles and knob furniture and the second BS EN 1935 Single-axis hinges. The guides outline the products covered by the standard and the hardware coding system used in the standards. The guides also cover CE marking and quality assurance issues.
Association of Building Hardware Manufacturers
Garage door installation CD-ROM
A CD-ROM from garage door manufacturer Cardale Doors will help housebuilders select, buy and install garage doors. It has information on all the company’s products including technical data on necessary opening sizes and frame dimensions. It also contains warranty information and health, safety and security guidelines.
Guide to specifying fire-resistant glass
Glass manufacturer Pilkington has brought out a guide to specifying fire-resistant glass called Fire Resistant Glass Range Guide. It contains product data, tables and charts with products divided into two categories, integrity and insulating, with details on each type. The guide also contains information on the latest standards, European fire tests and installing the glass in a suitable fire-resistant frame.
Advice for fitting hinges and handles
Laird Security Hardware has produced two illustrated leaflets: one on its Challenger 3D three-way adjustable butt hinge for PVCu and composite doors; and another on its GEM range of door handles.
Laird Security Hardware
Sitelines Open to errorSchüco, supplier of window and door systems in PVCu, aluminium and steel, outlines six main considerations when installing aluminium windows into prepared openings in buildings