Is this the most secure skylight in the UK?


Sunsquare was approached by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London for the installation of a new skylight that would shed some natural light on their impressive collection. Housing some of the world’s most famous works in art, fashion and architecture, the skylight needed some of the highest possible safety specifications, including loss protection from UV rays, gunfire and explosions.

About V&A

The Victoria and Albert Museum is the world’s largest museum of applied arts, decorative arts, and design. It houses a permanent collection of over 2.8 million objects, books and archives that span over 5,000 years. The museum holds many of the UK’s national collections and houses some of the greatest resources for the study of architecture, furniture, fashion, textiles, photography, sculpture, painting, jewellery, glass, ceramics, book arts, Asian art and design, theatre and performance. Founded in 1852, the museum is named after Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.

Famous works at the V&A:

  • Tippoo’s Tiger
  • Raphael’s Cartoons
  • Constable’s Landscape paintings
  • The Three Graces by Antonio Canova
  • The Ascension with Christ giving the Keys to St Peter by Donatello


The skylight for this project needed to achieve two things: provide natural light and meet high-security specifications to ensure the works are protected.The security specifications required for this particular skylight needed to achieve an LPS SR3 rating.

LPS – Loss Prevention Specification
SR3 – Security Risk 3, or a medium to high-security risk. This is out of four possible security risks, with SR1 being low risk and SR4 being the highest risk.

Setting out, we didn’t know that a skylight has ever or could ever achieve such a high rating. And we welcomed the challenge.

Products Specifications

  • Glass is certified to EN356 P8B.
  • Outer leaf – 28mm Pilkington Optilam Low Iron EN356 P8B, with edges polished prior to lamination.
  • Includes 1 x 0.38mm white diffused interlayer.
  • Cavity – 16mm black spacer bar, stepped on all four edges, silicone sealed.
  • Inner leaf – 8.8mm Pilkington Optilam™ K hard coat low E laminated, all edges polished.

Additional features included to the frame

  • WITH M8 X 150mm BOLTS
  • FRME WITH M8 X 150mm BOLTS

The glass eventually achieved:

Light transmission                  53%
G value                                         40%
CRI                                                97%
U value                                         1.8 W/m2K
UV filter                                       EN410:2011
At 320nm                                     0%
At 380nm                                     0%
At 400nm                                     26%
At 550nm                                      73%


So is this the most secure skylight in the UK?

We believe so.

In addition to producing enough light for the artefact rooms below, the skylight met the high standards for the specification of glass and the extra steel required to meet specifications for protection from UV, explosions, and gunfire. It was a first for our team at Sunsquare and a truly astonishing accomplishment.

About Sunsquare

Since 2004, Sunsquare Limited has been pioneering skylight designs, always aiming for the highest possible specification. With core offerings of fixed and opening skylights, rooflights and walk-on products for flat roofs, Sunsquare’s provides natural light and ventilation solutions for both domestic and commercial buildings. Based in Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk, with 45 staff, Sunsquare is one of the country’s leading skylight manufacturers.

The post Is this the Most Secure Skylight in the UK? appeared first on Sunsquare.


By: cubiq-pedro
Title: Is this the Most Secure Skylight in the UK?
Sourced From:
Published Date: Wed, 18 Jan 2023 09:54:34 +0000

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the lifetime of a skylight

The lifespan of a skylight depends on several factors, such as its material, its geographic location, and the maintenance and care that goes into it. Generally speaking, a typical skylight can last anywhere between ten to thirty years when properly cared for and installed.

Skylights are often made from quality materials such acrylic or PVC. They can last up 15 years if taken care of properly. They can also be made of steel, tempered glass, or wood frames. Each material offers different levels of longevity but all should provide good structural integrity over many years if taken care of properly.

The quality of the materials used to build them is important, as well as the geographical location where they are located. This plays an important role in how long they last. The lifespan of skylights placed in harsh climates such as extreme heat, humidity, and both may be shorter than those situated in warmer areas that have less severe weather. Exposure to hazardous elements like high ultraviolet radiation or windblown debris can also affect its performance and useful life.

Skylights can offer wonderful natural lighting options in homes for many decades if they’re properly maintained. This life expectancy could vary between 10 and 30 years, depending on various factors such as material type, geographic area, and regular maintenance checks.

What are the cons of solar tube lighting

Solar tube lighting brings natural sunlight to dark indoor spaces. This is an eco-friendly and cost-effective way to do so. It has some drawbacks, so it is important to consider before you decide to install it.

The first is price. Because solar tubes require special installation, solar collectors and piping to properly distribute the light, they can be costly. Contrastively, traditional fixtures can be as affordable.

The second reason is that solar tube lighting performs best in direct sunshine and not as well when there are clouds or rain. This can result in fluctuations in the amount and quality of the light that is delivered, which may limit the effectiveness of solar tube lighting as a long term solution for artificial lighting.

Third, glass tubing can cause glare and reflections in rooms. This reduces the viewing angles and design elements in the space. Its ability to absorb heat from the outside can cause heat problems in indoor spaces.

Finally, solar tube lighting requires regular maintenance in order to keep the tubing clean from dust buildup which diminishes its overall efficiency at directing light into interior spaces. You should inspect the seals surrounding vents and other components and clean the tubes’ reflective surfaces regularly.

What are the key points to remember when shopping for a tubular Skylight?

You should consider several things when choosing a tubular skylight. Consider the dimensions and size of your space. Your tubular Skylight should fit snugly to allow maximum daylight in your space without compromising energy efficiency.

Next, consider the dome material. Mid-grade plastic domes will provide excellent insulation and performance but let less light into your home. However, higher quality aluminum or stainless-steel domes provide greater thermal resistance and allow more sunlight in.

Important is the type of diffuser you choose: There are prismatic diffusers, which evenly disperse light evenly and adjustable diffusers that bend light according time of day.

Look out for extra features like UV protection, exhaust valves and insect screens. These will ensure maximum comfort when natural light is brought into your home through your tubular skylight.

Are solar tubes able to be closed?

Yes, solar tubes can be closed. The design of some sun tubes may include adjustable shutters that can be open or closed as needed. A cap could be an option for controlling how much light enters a tube. These are installed at the top of a tube to close it off from any external light entering as well as keep precipitation from accumulating in the tube itself. Depending on their design, many solar tubes include an acoustic insulation that reduces noise or an integrated curtain or blind. This allows you to control how much natural sunlight enters the space. You don’t have to open/close any caps or shutters manually each time. In summary, solar tubes can be opened and closed to control their resulting efforts in daylighting systems better.

What are the advantages of tubular Skylights?

There are several disadvantages to tubular skylights. Most importantly, they need professional installation to properly seal and secure them. This can lead to more costly and lengthy installation, as well as higher costs than the initial price. Due to their limited size, tubular skylights may not fit into larger roof openings. These skylights are more likely to block the ceiling than a traditional skylight which allows natural sunlight to pass through at all angles.

Another problem is that tubular Skylights can only function well in direct sunlight. This can limit their use in certain climates. It is important to choose the right fan or additional air ventilation system. These fixtures will heat up the home more and can cause discomfort during summer months. Finally, tubular skylights cannot offer an expansive view of the sky or landscape like traditional fixed glass models do.

What type of skylight suits a flat-roof roof best?

When it comes to flat roof skylights, there are several different types to choose from. Before making a decision on which type of skylight is best for your flat roof, several factors need to be taken into consideration including energy efficiency, installation cost, and aesthetic appeal.

Flat roof skylights come in many forms, including direct-vented skylights as well as solar-powered and electric-powered skylights.

Direct-vented rooflights allow for direct connection between indoor and outdoor spaces. Direct-vented models have either manual or motorized venting systems that allow airflow to be controlled while still capturing sunlight from above. Direct-ventilated models require ceiling reinforcement because of their height and weight difference to other windows in the area. This is especially true for rooms with higher ceilings.

For those who want a simpler installation, solar-powered or electric powered skylights are the best option. This model features glass lenses, which let in maximum sunlight during the day. It also has an LED nightlight to help you see outside when it’s dark. It is powered by solar energy during daylight hours. It can also be opened and closed easily with a remote controller. A rain sensor prevents any water damage inside.

Flat roof skylights that are powered by electricity can provide greater control over the level of your lighting lux. They have advanced electronic controls that allow you dial in light levels precisely without any glare, darkness or issues like passive (nonelectrical) daylighting system panels. Because they don’t need ventilation, they are smaller and more suitable for spaces that are enclosed or tightly constructed like attic rooms.

If you are looking for a reliable and low-maintenance solution, then tubular skylights might be a good option. They can usually be installed on top of your existing roof structure. Tubular models are composed of reflective tubes that reflect sunlight down onto your home during bright days. One side opens up towards your flat roofing, making it easy for you to clean. These tubes still provide some heat and ambient light on cloudy days.

Before you make a choice on which flat roof skylight is right for your home, it’s important to consider the price range and any potential installation issues. You’ll find a stunning system that provides natural lighting in your home without affecting your budget.


External Links

How To

Stop Leaks: How To Repair and Prevent Leaks In Your Skylight

Skylight leaks can be repaired using specialized sealants that fill the gaps between frame and glass. They are strong and effective. Also, make sure to clear away any debris or buildup before applying the sealant. Before sealing, inspect for any other signs of wear or damage as well as any remaining loose screws in order to help prevent future problems (i.e., securing with silicone caulk).

Regularly inspect your skylight for any signs of wear or damage, such as cracked glass seals or rusting metal frames. This will help prevent future skylight leakages. It may also be worth cleaning the skylight with mild soap to prolong its lifespan. You might also consider storm windows for additional protection from elements like hail and wind. This will help prevent any caulking or protection materials from becoming loose over time which could lead to leakage. If properly sealed around perimeter edges, rubber flashing can be installed to reduce water intrusion.

Finally, proper insulation around your skylight helps minimize temperature differences which may lead to excessive condensation build-up leading to further damaged caulking material around the frame thus increasing the potential for leaking into interior walls/ceilings/furniture depending on where installed originally.

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