A slice of the sky

A slice of the sky

NATURAL LIGHTING

The best way to usher in natural light into a home is by using sky lights. Want to infuse colour and drama into your lighting? Then, use sky lights that are made of stained glass or slightly tinted glass.

Sky lights are one of the easiest ways of ushering in natural light into homes. The materials used in sky lighting could either be transparent or semi-transparent, depending upon how much sunlight one wants to allow into one’s home. Natural light lifts the spirits and makes the space bright and cheerful. Also, it makes the space appear larger. A sky light provides an unusual view of the sky, especially on bright starry nights and during full moon days. Security grills can be fixed wherever necessary.

Also, the use of sky lights makes your home a more sustainable space by conserving energy. More daylight means less use of artificial light. Advanced technology has greatly benefited end users.

Modern sky lights use glass infill like windows. This can be done by using insulated glass units where one will be of low emission. This will give a balancing effect of low U-factor (insulation value for windows) and optimal solar heat gain co-efficiency.
This is to encourage enough daylight and allow artificial lights only if there is a necessity. There are many sizes which can be integrated into the construction of a sky light. It can be installed in any space like the living room, kitchen, corridor etc. There are many varieties of skylights which can be chosen according to one’s needs.

Roof window

A roof window is more like a large window suitable for studios or penthouses with a slope ceiling. Also it is useful in reading and writing spaces. A roof window in a bedroom makes it appear larger.

Sun tunnel

It is a good alternative for traditional sky lighting. This allows natural light into the bathroom, hallway and closets. This is easy to install.

Tubular day lighting device (TDD)

This is a modern technology used to transmit visible light through the opaque walls and roof. Here, the tube itself is a passive component consisting of either a simple reflective interior coating or a light-conducting optic bundle.

The tube is frequently capped with a transparent roof mounted zone called ‘light collector’ and terminated with a different assembly that admits daylight into interior spaces and distributes light evenly.

Heliostats

Heliostats are mirrors which can be moved automatically to reflect sunlight in a constant direction. They serve as another method of sky lighting. This type of sky lighting is gaining popularity as energy-efficient lighting.

Smart glass

Here the material can be switched between a transparent state and an opaque state. Translucent reflectors or retro reflectors provide natural lighting. Switching is done by applying voltage to the material or by using optic fibre cables embedded in the concrete walls.

Hybrid solar

This is a roof-mounting light collector. This kind of sky light uses modified efficient fluorescent lighting fixtures that have transparent rods connected to OFC. This is essentially a non-electric utility used in day lighting. If you are not happy with the several sky light options, you could probably opt for a well-designed isolated solar gain building, which has a solarium (a space which has glass on all sides), a sun room, a greenhouse etc.

Sky lights are the right element to highlight certain areas. A sheet of glass over the courtyard allows immense natural light into the house which creates a sense of openness while providing protection against adverse weather conditions.

In order to create a decorative atmosphere, sky lights can be made of stained glass, slightly tinted glass or glass blocks. Printing of light designs on the glass will lend an aesthetic look to your home.

The glass used in sky lights and other windows can be treated to reduce light transmission so that they transmit only required light. Adding a reflector surface also helps.

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