On Wednesday, February 20, 2013 Jane Quartel, President of Halcyon Shades, was asked by State Representative Michele Kratky to come and testify in front of the Special Standing committee on Small Business at the Missouri State House of Representatives. Kratky sponsors Bill 391, which authorizes an income tax credit of $500 for each person a small business hires who is disabled or who has been discharged from a state or federal correctional facility within the 12 months immediately preceding the hiring.
At the hearing of this bill, Jane shared Halcyon Shade’s story and how one of Halcyon’s best practices is letting the factory workers hire production team members. “We screen and test the candidates, but it is the production workers themselves that get the final say… We currently have three convicted felons out of 15 employees and would have four out of sixteen, but we had to lay off an employee two weeks ago due to sluggish sales. These people are all highly reliable and utterly grateful to have work. In fact, it is the ability to land a job right of prison that is this state’s best chance of avoid recidivism… It is our experience that we can integrate these people back into society as tax payers and valuable neighbors and teammates especially if we can get to them quickly upon their release.” Jane also spoke about one of Halcyon’s many unusual practices where managers are required to cook their employee’s lunch on Fridays to thank them for their service.
The Chair of the Special Standing committee on Small Business, Noel Torpey, was able to experience Halcyon's company lunch on Friday, February 16, 2013 and get a taste of what Habitata/Halcyon is really like. He even told the rest of his committee during the hearing, elaborating how accurate Jane’s testimony about Halcyon is and what a great experience it was to be there on Friday.
On June 16, 2012 Halcyon Shades was awarded a GSA contract after a fairly long and arduous approval process that took about 1 ½ years. Effective July, Halcyon Shades product items were active on the GSA Advantage! website, a purchasing website designed for use for governmental agencies. Then on 7/30/2012 the first job was sold to a GSA customer: a guard tower for in Arizona. The guard tower poses several interesting design challenges for us as we are dealing at once with 2 difficult issues: a trapezium (a trapezoid with one straight 90 degree side and one angled side) on the left and right sides of the tower, and then front windows which are beveled or slanted inwards AND meet the trapezium at the corners with glass corners. Quite a challenge indeed. More information to come on this interesting customer and installation challenge.
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Glass, even dual pane glass, poses a particular problem to thermal control. Glass is a particularly good conduct of heat, but it really excels at allowing light to pass through it uninhibited. Dual pane glass is an insulation strategy or a conduction barrier. When it is treated with low emissivity (low-e) coatings, it takes on some radiant barrier qualities; however, low coatings are limited in its effectiveness. First, glass coatings generally, whether they are tinted or reflective, have to take into account the energy build-up in the glass. Tints or window film, for example, absorb heat and because they are attached to the glass, transfer that heat into the glass itself. If glass temperature rises too much, it will melt the silicon seals that hold glass panes to the aluminum frame that makes up a dual pane glass insert. Under unusually high solar heat gain loads, the glass will expand too rapidly and actually crack or shatter. Low-e coatings are generally very limited in their reflectivity because 1. The coatings can obscure the view, and 2. The coatings can cause thermal build-up because they are attached to the glass, and break the glass (see picture). As a matter of fact, window manufacturers void their warranties once window film is applied to the glass.
This is why, even with the best dual or even triple pane windows out there in the market, the best performance that can be observed is a BTU bounce of 16-23%. Most of us do not have a BTU meter, but you can experience this for yourself. On a hot day, put your hand on the window pane and feel how hot that glass can get. That heat is coming into your room as heat always goes where it is not, like your cool, air conditioned building. Now think about how much extra load the A/C unit has to carry in order to cool down that room. Now let’s switch to winter. Again, put your hand on the window pane – it will be chilly. The window acts like a refrigeration pane. Imagine how much heat is escaping through your windows! And your heating unit just has to compensate by providing additional heat into your rooms as your heat is going where it is not – to the outside through your conductive windows.
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MPET solar shades solve these problems by design. The solar shade hangs between usually an inch or so off of the surface of the glass. The tint in the shade does absorb some heat, albeit a very small amount, but this heat is never conducted into the glass (like window film is). Instead it convects up the surface of the shade and out into the room. The reflectivity of glass is usually in the 16-17% range. The reflectivity of MPET solar shades, at least those manufactured by Halcyon Shades, by contrast, is in the range of 50-81%! Between the absorptance and the reflection of MPET, up to 97% of the infrared heat is being stopped at the shade barrier and most of it is being transferred back through the glass. The shades literally create a thermal barrier for your windows, wrapping your windows with a radiant barrier that blocks heat out during the summer, yet keeps heat in during the winter. Just like a thermos. Now that’s real thermal control.
University of Missouri Science and Technology at Rolla, Missouri (MO S&T for short) boasts a solar village on its campus of 4 super energy efficient homes that have participated in past US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon competitions. This elite competition occurs every year and 20 universities from across the globe are chosen to come and show case their innovative designs with the public. Recently MO S&T was again chosen to participate with their 5th design which will go on display some time next fall in Irvine, CA. Interestingly, the homes from past competitions are real dwellings, housing students, and in one, a family of four! One of the homes is spared as a class room/research space with lots of cool measuring gadgets and testing equipment. In the spirit of supporting local Missouri talent and technology, Halcyon Shades is proud to sponsor the MO S&T Solar House team. Go Miners! For more information, go here: http://solarhouse.mst.edu
Wouldn't it be great if every company and institution could afford to install the latest in energy saving HVAC equipment. Unfortunately, in these troubled economic times, the money for such expensive upgrades is just not there. Halcyon Shades offers a lower cost alternative to expensive HVAC upgrades by providing highly effective thermal control in the building envelope. Halcyon Shades reject heat in both directions. In the summer, they bounce heat causing infrared light back out the window and in the winter, they contain furnace heat in the building. This allows even the biggest buildings to set back their HVAC systems to use less energy.
Halcyon Shades, especially when installed with our optional side rail systems, can reduce the refrigeration effects of glass. Halcyon Shades, even without side rails, can contain air flow from forced air HVAC systems from passing over glass and creating unwanted thermal exchange. It is almost like having an extra pane of glass even in heavy plate glass window systems.
Halcyon Shades provide superior thermal control all year round.
Halcyon Shades Rejects Cabin Heat
Halcyon Shades are not just for buildings. Our customers use our superior heat rejecting shades to control heat in earth movers, tug boats, cruise ships and other large vehicles and vessels that get blasted by solar heat. Heavy equipment and marine craft are exposed to the sun when not in use and can build up incredible amounts of heat. We have been told by one of our customers in the mining business that the cabs in their earth movers when not in use reach internal temperatures as high as 190 degrees Fahrenheit. Wow! That's hot. By using Halcyon Shades, to reject heat, operators do not get cooked when they enter the cabs of earth movers or step into cabins on marine craft - even if they have been sitting in the sun for days.
Halcyon Shades not only control the heat, but they also control the glare reflecting off of the water enhancing visibility and the view. It is like putting a very good pair of sunglasses on your windows and port lights.
Chicago, Illinois October 2-4, 2011. Halcyon Shades took part in the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) Annual Convention at McCormick Place in Chicago, Illinois and it was outstanding (although we are still a little jittery from all of the energy drink samples). Halcyon Shades are perfect for convenience stores because they can save the chocolate and other inventory from unwanted heat and UV damage while still allowing store personnel to see parking lots and gas pumps. Woven shades obscure the view and do not provide infrared heat reflectivity like Halcyon Shades do. We met a lot of very nice people from around the world at NACS and we got to spread the word to convenience store facility managers and store owners about Halcyon Shades. Over the next months, you will be seeing Halcyon Shades showing in a convenience store near you.