Most Innovative Specialty Glass Product
Bellwether Design Technologies, www.InsightSkylights.com
Insight Skylights, a patent-pending system by Bellwether Design Technologies, represent a significant departure in standard skylight design. Insight is characterized by transparent structural glass construction, and a minimal apex fitting, according to company officials.
The system is the culmination of 20 years’ experience designing monumental skylights and structural glass systems. “Our goal was to refine skylight design to include only the essential elements,” says Mike Maguire, director of design and engineering at Bellwether.
The result is a skylight that does not require metal rafters and purlins common to traditional systems. “When you look up at one of our skylights, you see only sky, and not the typical grid of metal framing that obstructs your view,” says Brian Harrington, Bellwether’s director of business development. The uncluttered design delivers more than clear aesthetics—it creates an affordable system, with higher performance than most traditional skylights, according to officials.
Insight offers five shapes, including pyramids, polygons, hipped ridges, structural ridges and single slopes. Each shares a short list of structural components, including an aluminum sill, structural glass and aluminum apex fittings.
Pyramids and polygons range in size from 4-feet by 4-feet to 14-feet by 14- feet. Hipped ridges are available from 4-feet to 14-feet wide, and in unlimited lengths. Structural ridges and single slopes are available from 4-feet to 8-feet up-slope, and in unlimited lengths.
Insight’s installation method is simple and efficient. The skylights can be installed in about half the time of metal framed units, with the aid of custom installation jigs. This allows installation to be completed in one day, within a much tighter weather window. “When you standardize the installation process, it removes variability of conditions, and contributes to the predictable system performance,” says Harrington.
Fully tested at ATI, Insight’s uncomplicated design delivers minimal air leakage, no water leakage, and robust structural performance, according to officials.
“By removing the typical caps and screws that penetrate the hip joints on metal framed skylights at every 10 or 12 inches, you remove the potential for leaks. And that can mean hundreds of locations on traditional skylights,” says Bill Wright, Bellwether’s director of technology.