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DIY Tip of the Month

corrugated_poly_deck_coveringFall removal of leaves and debris from polycarbonate patio covers, canopies, and awnings is important to maintaining high light transmission and extending the life of the panels. Rinse panels with water and dry using a soft non-abrasive cloth. If additional cleaning is needed, use a mild household detergent and a soft sponge or brush.

Avoid cleaning the polycarbonate panels when dry. Sand and dust particles cling to the exterior of the panel and may scratch the surface. (Note: Minor surface scratches will not damage the panel, simply reduce optical clarity.)


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From Around the World: Polycarbonate Architecture and Design

Multiwall polycarbonate is becoming a material of choice for glazing applications where thermal insulation is a major consideration, reducing a building’s overall energy consumption. Additionally, the sheet has excellent resistance against UV degradation and offers high impact performance over a wide temperature range (-40°C to 120°C).

In Brazil: Home of the Atletico Paranaense soccer club and the 2014 World Cup venue, the Arena da Baixada soccer stadium features a polycarbonate retractable roof system. The multiwall polycarbonate panels provide filtered sunlight and protection from the elements, keeping the stadium seating and field dry – rain or shine.

For photos and to read more about this polycarbonate application, please here to read the article published in the International Edition of the Curitiba.


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Greenhouse Coverings: LT and Plant Growth

“Importance of High Light Transmission”

plantWhen it comes to light and growing plants in a greenhouse, growers are concerned with light intensity (brightness), light quality (color/whiteness), light duration (daylength), and the ability for light to reach the plants. The amount of light transmittance coming into a greenhouse is one of the most important factors affecting plant growth and crop production.

When light transmission is deficient or drops below a minimum intensity, plants may fall below their compensation point.  (A plants compensation point is the metabolic point at which the rates of photosynthesis and respiration are equal so that leaves do not gain or lose dry matter.) If this happens, photosynthesis slows down or ceases while respiration continues, greatly impacting plant growth, development, and yield.

Greenhouse covering materials have various light transmission values. Compared to glass, acrylic, and PE films, multiwall polycarbonate offers the greenhouse grower the ideal combination of high light transmission, thermal insulation, impact strength, and energy efficiency in a lightweight sheet.

Since light transmission plays such a significant part in greenhouse growing, understanding the performance characteristics of the different manufacturer’s polycarbonate panels is very important.

Polycarbonate warranties address how much light transmission a panel will lose over a period of time. The higher the percentage, the more light transmission is lost. Loss of light transmission has a significant impact on the functionality of a polycarbonate panel, especially in plant growth applications.

The rule of thumb is that for every 1 % of light transmission, there is a 0.75% – 1% loss of crop yield.



What is a polycarbonate translucent wall?

interior_wall exterior_wallPolycarbonate Translucent Walls

Used as a façade material or for interior cladding, polycarbonate translucent walls are an efficient and effective way to transmit natural light into a building. Polycarbonate can be used as glazing on vertical, sloped, or curved walls.

Click here to visit our online glossary page.


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Frequently Asked Polycarbonate Question

Q: What is a daylighting system?

A: In structures, daylighting refers to the controlled admission of natural light into a building to illuminate the interior space. The best daylighting systems provide natural light without glare, delivering visual comfort and well-being. Daylighting systems promote green building design and can be divided into two main categories: top lighting and side lighting. Skylights and translucent curtain walls are examples of daylighting systems.


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Zoo Exhibit Entrance Features Polycarbonate Glazing

“Vertical Daylighting”

Duo-Gard_BronxZooFor the first time since the 1950’s, komodo dragons are back at New York’s Bronx Zoo. The exhibit opened earlier this summer and is the new home to three adolescent komodo dragons named Rose, Ivy, and Stubby.

The entrance of the exhibit features a beautiful translucent wall system engineered by Duo-Gard Industries Inc. in Canton, MI. The arched 28-ft-high by 20-ft-wide translucent wall integrates LEXAN™ THERMOCLICK™ 40mm clear polycarbonate panels in Duo-Gard’s proprietary aluminum framing profile. The light diffusing characteristics of the THERMOCLICK™ panel eliminate glare and hot spots in the exhibit, creating a misty, glowing appearance that draws visitor’s attention.

Click here to read full article.
LEXAN THERMOCLICK is a trademark of SABIC.