Replacing drafty, single-pane windows with energy-efficient windows is a smart way to improve the energy efficiency of existing buildings while also improving occupant comfort.
Graham Architectural Products has launched GThurm – a line of high-efficiency windows that are notable for a number of reasons, among them, their use of pultruded polyurethane composites for the lineals.
The first commercial installation of the GThurm windows took place in late 2010 at the Bayer CropScience LP Clayton (N.C.) Development and Training Facility. A total of 76 windows were replaced at the building, which is roughly 50 years old. The before/after difference was immediately noticeable, according to John Rock, who was the site manager at Clayton during the time of the installation.
“I could actually feel a breeze on a windy day when I stood next to the old windows,” said Rock. “The new windows have greatly increased the comfort of the people who work in this facility. Furthermore, we expect to realize energy savings of roughly 12 percent, which is significant,” he continued.
Graham Architectural Products, a member of Bayer MaterialScience LLC’s EcoCommercial Building (ECB) Network, is a leading manufacturer of architectural-grade windows, doors and curtain walls. The company’s GThurm high-efficiency window products are the first American-made architecturally rated (AW) windows to feature thermal transmission measures as low as U 0.18 (R 5.5), using readily available insulating glass. GThurm windows feature Graham glass-reinforced polyurethane (G2RP) technology, offering improved dimensional stability, durability, thermal insulation and environmental friendliness over traditional windows. G2RP technology employs a unique polyurethane resin supplied by Bayer MaterialScience LLC that contains no volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
According to Graham Architectural Products, to create these superior strength windows, 80 percent continuous stranded glass content is combined with 20 percent resin to produce window lineals using a pultrusion process. Unlike traditional fiberglass window lineals, the GThurm window lineals pultruded with the G2RP process by Graham Engineering require no additional reinforcement for structural integrity. The unique process allows for lightweight framing with superior structural performance and a thermal performance nearly triple that of ordinary AW-rated products.
In addition to superior strength and increased energy efficiency, GThurm lineals are expected to use less energy per pound of raw materials to produce than comparable aluminum designs, supporting a sustainable design, according to Graham Architectural Products.
Having the Bayer facility in Clayton, N.C., as Graham Architectural Products’ first commercial application for our GThurm windows made perfect sense, according to Jim Eisenbeis, director of marketing, Graham Architectural Products. “Bayer MaterialScience LLC has been a strategic partner in this venture from the beginning, and we are pleased to be able to cite the Clayton project as a benchmark for all future applications of our high-efficiency GThurm windows.”
Graham Architectural Products joined Bayer MaterialScience LLC’s EcoCommercial Building (ECB) Network in 2010 as one of its inaugural product solution suppliers. The ECB program advocates an integrated, collaborative approach to sustainable building design and construction. Network member organizations provide technologies aligned with target areas that help to reduce energy costs and increase sustainability. The network’s members function independently to provide products and services for sustainable building projects, many of which involve Bayer MaterialScience products. In addition to Graham Architectural Products, other participants in the expanding ECB program include Bostik, Deloitte Consulting LLP, Eaton Corporation, IDC Architects, Kingspan, Carnegie Mellon University, Bayer Technology Services and Sheffield Plastics.