COVID-19 is bringing concerns about cleanability and sanitization to the forefront. Managers of healthcare facilities and other buildings are constantly looking for ways to minimize the risk of viral transmission.
A new insulated window is neutralizing risk where you may not have realized it existed—on the window shade. Transira Window Solutions by Winco Window Company features a shade embedded between panes of glass, so there are no draperies hanging outside the window to collect allergens and airborne germs.
Transira Window Solutions eliminates the risk of allergens and airborne germs clinging to draperies hanging outside the window. Credit: Winco Window Company
The shades can be locally controlled and connect to the building management system, allowing teachers to control how much sunlight enters a classroom or hospital patients to control their own shading. They can also be automated to rise in case of a fire or lower in case of an intruder.
Below, Kurtis Suellentrop, vice president of sales and marketing for Winco Window Solutions, and product specialist John Iffland discuss Transira’s efficiency and ease of use.
interiors+sources: When was this product developed?
Kurtis Suellentrop: Winco has been developing it for over five years, but the patent was finalized in 2019.
i+s: How did the name for Transira come about?
Suellentrop: Transira—to transition. It can transition a space from pitch black to full brightness. This name conveys the utility, functionality and ease-of-use of the product.
i+s: Who designed Transira?
Suellentrop: Winco research and development, engineering and sales departments, including Ken Snader, Lothar Erkens, Gantt Miller III, Gantt Miller IV, John Iffland and Dennis Brosch.
The retrofit version of Transira fits over a pre-existing storefront or curtainwall. Transira’s prime designs include fixed and casement windows.
i+s: What was the inspiration behind the product?
Suellentrop: A more efficient and cost-effective way to manage building daylight control and energy savings easily.
i+s: What was the biggest hurdle in bringing the product to life?
Suellentrop: Designing a control system that worked with the end user and was easy to install.
i+s: How was the response to the product?
John Iffland: We have had a great response, especially from school teachers and faculty—they’ve mentioned how easy it is to interact with natural daylight, and the facilities managers noted how much they’re being used and how uniform it makes the building look. They also appreciate the ability to allow fresh air ventilation indoors, which is an important aspect of safety while operating with airborne diseases and pathogens like COVID-19.
i+s: What was the most impressive project Transira found its way into?
Iffland: A UC Davis research project at the John Muir Institute of the Environment. It is a 100-year-old building originally designed as a barn, and it still maintains the historic aesthetic with these modern windows.
i+s: What is your hope for Transira?
Iffland: To allow building owners to easily reduce their building’s carbon footprint and decrease their energy costs without having to impact the exterior building envelope, significantly reducing the upfront capital and labor costs.
i+s: Are there any changes to Transira on the horizon?
Iffland: Winco is developing additional methods to control daylight, allowing for more design and control options.
i+s: What’s something people don’t know about the product?
Iffland: The range of options our Transira window designs have. We not only have our traditional “prime” window, which includes fixed and casement windows, but we also have a retrofit version of Transira that essentially fits in over a pre-existing storefront or curtainwall. This makes Transira a desirable choice for an easy building upgrade.
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