The 3M™ Sun Control Window Films Prestige Series from 3M protects against solar radiation, making buildings not only more environmentally friendly but bringing economical benefits, too.
The building industry finds itself under increasing pressure today to reduce its carbon footprint because, with construction and operational emissions of buildings contributing to approximately 40 % of greenhouse gases produced, it holds – and architects in particular – great power for helping to safeguard the future of the planet. To aid this process, policymakers are bringing in new schemes to provide direction and improve accountability; for example, the European Green Deal recently announced the Renovation Wave Strategy to improve the energy performance of existing buildings, preventing unnecessary demolition and encouraging more passive forms of energy saving.
To meet the demands of these new schemes, it will become common practice to measure carbon contributions on every project – from embodied to operational emissions. Well-known sustainable certification standards such as BREEAM, HQE or LEED are leading the way for measuring the emissions of buildings. When it comes to products, Environmental Product Declarations (EPD) can be used to transparently and comparably assess environmental impact.
The recent EPD registration of the series allows architects and designers to easily assess the effects of the product on a building’s energy usage
3M, leading global manufacturer of innovative film solutions, is committed to sustainable accountability. The recent EPD registration of the 3M™ Sun Control Window Films Prestige Series allows architects and designers to easily assess the effects of the product on a building’s energy usage – reported as carbon (CO2-eq) savings. Not only does the product reduce carbon emissions, the EPD also shows how energy savings translate into financial ones, along with the timeframe for the investment to prove its economic-, as well as environmental, sense.
Designed to be applied to the glazing of commercial, public and residential buildings, 3M™ Sun Control Window Films Prestige Series provides balance between maximum light transmission and heat rejection. Featuring multi-layered nano-technology, the film is wafer-thin at 0.058 mm and rejects up to 97 per cent of infrared from the sun, which means up to 60 per cent of heat is rejected. It not only protects occupants from heat and improves indoor comfort, it also reduces the need for air-conditioning, resulting in less energy consumption and reduced CO2 emissions.
As part of the EPD process, 3M qualified these benefits through a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) which transparently communicates what a product is made of and how it impacts the environment across its entire life cycle. This includes assessment of raw materials used in production and measurement of energy consumption during manufacturing, packaging, transport, distribution and installation phases. Impacts related to usage over the full product lifecycle as well as removal are also taken into account.
This comprehensive calculation aims to give architects and designers an accurate view into the near future by taking into consideration the specific context of the project. Simulations were undertaken to test the effects of the 3M™ Sun Control Window Films Prestige Series over ten and 15 years respectively (the warranted lifespans) on a 4-storey reference building in 45 cities across the world, and compared factors such as the building location, total window area and monthly temperatures, as well as the carbon impact of the country's energy grid mix, for example, nuclear and solar versus fossil fuels.
While sustainability must be a priority, 3M also understands that other considerations such as aesthetics and safety should not be compromised as a result. Almost invisible to the naked eye, with 3M™ Sun Control Window Films Prestige Series the appearance of buildings is protected. High transparency is maintained, and because the product is metal-free, it does not produce mirror effects, nor interfere with mobile phone-, GPS- or satellite radio reception. Other benefits include improved protection against burglary and reduced damage from broken glass in the case of accidents.
To learn more, tune in to 3M’s upcoming webinar ‘Functional and Decorative Solutions for Windows’ on Thursday 7 July, 11.00 – 12.00 AM CET.