South African aluminium extrusion company Wispeco says its new software assists in measuring the transfer of radiant energy through aluminium windows, as all buildings are required to comply with U-value standards, which indi-cate a building’s level of insulation.
Therefore, the company has launched its U-Solve software package, as national building regulations require specific fenestration designs to focus on structural integrity and energy efficiency.
The company highlights that U-Solve is endorsed by the South African Fenestration and Insulation Energy Rating Association, as it provides users with a certified U-value (watt/square metre/Kelvin) and solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) calculation for aluminium windows and doors.
U-Solve also comprises a range of glass types, which are all supported by the International Glass Database. The program includes glass codes for selected PFG glass and McCoys glass products, as well as a range of generic glass codes. The U-values and SHGC values calculated do not use centre of glass values, but rather whole-window values, which take the aluminium frame and the edge of glass effects into consideration.
The Association of Architectural Aluminium Manufacturers of South Africa says, although heat transfer occurs through convection, conduction and radiation, the total heat loss for aluminium is less than that of any other material owing to aluminium’s airtight qualities.
In 2012, Wispeco released a new thermally efficient window system designed for energy efficiency in buildings. The Crealco Edge is the first thermally broken window to be designed in South Africa for the local market. This refers to a type of window that has a polyamide strip separating the exterior from the interior aluminium profiles, enabling a reduction in heat transfer. The window helps to keep heat inside in winter and outside in summer, when used in conjunction with the appropriate glass. It is able to achieve U-values of less than 3 W/m2K when used with 25 mm double-glazing glass.
Wispeco says, despite aluminium extru- sion and smelting both being energy-intensive processes, concerns that this compromises users’ green credibility are countered by aluminium being 100% recyclable. Wispeco has further tackled this challenge by manu-facturing its products using 95% recycled aluminium.