Lumira Aerogel is a cutting-edge filling material that boasts exceptional lightness, effective light dispersion, and outstanding thermal insulation properties.
As Polish pioneers in incorporating aerogel into roof skylights, we have elevated their performance, surpassing the solutions offered by our competitors!
Aerogel is a material with extraordinary insulating properties. Originally developed by NASA to insulate space vehicles against extreme temperature conditions, aerogel is now being successfully utilized in various fields, including the construction industry.
Skylights with aerogel
ALUCO SKYLIGHT + LUMIRA AEROGEL
The exceptional properties of aerogel, such as low density, high light transmittance, and excellent thermal and acoustic insulation, make it an ideal material for utilization in roof skylights and other structural components of buildings. With its porous structure, aerogel exhibits low thermal conductivity and a substantial internal surface area, making it highly efficient as an insulating material.
Roof skylights are designed to allow natural light into the interior, enhancing the comfort of the facility’s occupants. However, they also need proper insulation to prevent heat loss during winter and overheating in summer. Additionally, maximizing the light dispersion effect is another essential aspect to consider.
At Aluco System, we have successfully utilized the properties of aerogel to create roof skylights. We incorporate aerogel as a filling material in the panels of our Aluco Skylight skylights. In Poland, we are pioneers in harnessing the advantages of aerogel in roof skylights. Our solutions surpass competitors’ products in terms of thermal performance and light dispersion.
Aerogel at Aluco System
INSULATED SKYLIGHTS AND FACADES
At Aluco System, we have successfully utilized Lumira aerogel to manufacture roof skylights and facades. Our products guarantee excellent thermal insulation and light dispersion. Aluco Panel facades and Aluco Skylight skylights meet the stringent standards and rank high among similar solutions in Poland.
What exactly is aerogel?
The perfect filling material
Aerogel is an innovative material with unique physical and chemical properties that has revolutionized many areas of science and technology. Its origins can be traced back to the 1930s when an American scientist, Steven Kistler, commenced research on a material with remarkably low density, high strength, and excellent insulation performance.
In his research, Kistler discovered that aerogel could be produced by drying silica gel under specific conditions. This unique process results in silica gel reducing its density to less than 100 times that of water, making it one of the lightest materials in the world.
Aerogel consists of 99% air, with the remaining 1% comprising a solid material, typically silicon oxide or metal, filling the porous structure of the material. Due to this unique structure, aerogel has an incredibly low density, making it weigh less than any other material of comparable volume.
Despite its low density, aerogel is remarkably strong and rigid, making it an ideal material for structural applications. Additionally, aerogel possesses excellent insulating properties, providing both effective thermal and acoustic insulation. As a result, it finds application in various industries, including construction, aviation, space, and medicine.
In the construction industry, aerogel is primarily utilized as an insulating material for roofs and walls. In our sector, it is employed for insulating roof skylights and facades.
Properties of Aerogel
Aerogel is a unique and innovative material with fascinating properties that have found applications in various areas, including the construction industry. Its most important benefits include high thermal performance and excellent light dispersion capabilities.
Due to its exceptional thermal performance, aerogel is a perfect material for filling the panels of roof skylights.
Aerogel exhibits very low thermal conductivity, which means it poorly conducts heat. This property allows it to insulate the skylight effectively, reducing heat loss and enhancing its overall performance. Additionally, aerogel’s high resistance to temperature variations and humidity ensures that the skylights will maintain their insulating properties for many years.
Aerogel is an incredibly lightweight material, composed of 99% air. Its low density contributes to its excellent thermal performance.
Another crucial aspect that influences the thermal performance of aerogel is its porous structure. The pores in aerogel are very small, often only a few nanometres in size. This design results in an extensive internal surface area, enabling efficient heat insulation. Additionally, aerogel is composed of 90% solids, allowing it to retain its insulating properties even under significant temperature fluctuations.
Very efficient prevention of heat conduction
The Lumira aerogel’s low solids content and extremely small pore size (approximately 20 nanometres) make it highly effective in preventing the conduction of heat and convection.
Heat Transfer Coefficient
The table below shows the heat transfer coefficient values for the individual panels in our Aluco Skylight skylights. The U coefficient values provided are for vertical mounting positions.
For horizontal mounting, these values are reduced. The U coefficient value for multi-layer polycarbonate panels filled with the Lumira® aerogel was tested in the horizontal position, which represents the worst-case mounting position.
Thermal Imaging Test
As demonstrated by thermal imaging camera pictures, polycarbonate cellular panels filled with Lumira aerogel exhibit significantly better insulating properties compared to conventional materials. The reddish, hotter areas represent parts of single glazing in the Lumira system.
Perfect Light Distribution
One of the most important properties of aerogel, which makes it the perfect material for use in roof skylights, is its ability to efficiently disperse light. This way, the light admitted into the premises through the skylight is evenly distributed, producing the effect of natural lighting of the premises. Aerogel functions like matte glass, transmitting light but reducing glare and shading effects.
This is the reason why aerogel has found application in the design and production of roof skylights. Thanks to aerogel, the roof skylight can effectively admit natural light into the building without the loss of energy and unnecessary shadows on the walls or floors. This not only improves visual qualities but also enhances working comfort and efficiency. In certain working processes that require high precision, uniform lighting becomes essential for optimal performance.
The Lumira aerogel has a light transmittance of up to 90% per 1 cm of the filling thickness. When added to the polycarbonate cellular panels filling our Aluco Skylight roof skylights, aerogel increases the amount of admitted light by 30% compared to standard white-colored polycarbonate panels. Moreover, the light dispersion by aerogel does not necessitate the use of additional light filters and mats, making the skylights easier and more cost-effective to manufacture.
Comparison of the light dispersion effect
The effect of perfect daylight dispersion is clearly visible in the following comparative images, which demonstrate the difference in daylighting between a sports hall and an art gallery before and after the installation of roof skylights with aerogel.
Hint: Use the slider visible in the photo to see the “before/after” effect.
Advantages of Daylight
Admitting the maximum possible amount of natural daylight into buildings has been a long-standing goal in architectural design.
Research has shown that people staying in well-lit premises with uniform daylighting experience better health and increased productivity.
Other Properties of Aerogel
In addition to thermal insulation and light dispersion, aerogel also possesses many other beneficial properties, making it widely used in various fields, including the construction industry.
Aerogel is one of the lightest materials globally, with a density just a few times higher than that of air. This unique property allows it to be utilized in various structures requiring low weight, such as aviation, space exploration, or the production of strong yet lightweight structural components. From an architectural standpoint, this feature makes it easier to meet design requirements, such as for the roof structure of an industrial building.
Aerogel is chemically stable and highly resistant to UV radiation, making it exceptionally durable and capable of withstanding damage from external factors like the sun and wind.
Other advantages of aerogel include its non-toxicity and flammability class. It is a material that does not emit harmful substances and is also non-flammable, not releasing smoke in case of fire. As a result, aerogel can be used safely in various construction applications, ensuring the health and safety of people.
Aerogel is also durably hydrophobic, meaning it is water-resistant and does not absorb moisture or deform when exposed to water. Additionally, aerogel is resistant to mold and fungi, making it suitable for use in humid premises such as bathrooms or swimming pools.
An important advantage of aerogel is its effective noise insulation. Due to its highly porous structure, aerogel can efficiently absorb sounds, reducing noise in the premises. Compared to other insulating materials, such as mineral wool or plasterboards, aerogel can provide much better noise insulation without increasing thickness.
Aerogel also exhibits high mechanical strength, making roof skylights made of this material resistant to damage, including impacts and vibrations. This characteristic ensures that aerogel roof skylights are strong and long-lasting, contributing to their cost-efficiency and functionality.
Download our PDF brochure to find out more about fillings with aerogel offered by Aluco System.
Skylights with aerogel
A sample project using roof skylights with Lumira aerogel filling at the industrial bakery of Inter Europol SA in Marki.
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