According to the university, temperatures inside the museum have exceeded 110° F at times and damaged exhibits, including those containing dinosaur bones and rare animal specimens. The museum, for example, has one of the few existing partial skeletons of the Dodo, a flightless bird that became extinct in the late 17th century.
The trouble began in 2013, after the museum undertook an ambitious $2.5 million project to repair and restore the building’s Victorian-era glass roof. Part of that restoration included removing the roof’s existing, worn UV film. Apparently, the project didn’t include replacing it.
Despite outward appearances, the old UV film was still doing its job. Following restoration, the unimpeded windows – free of both the UV protection and the built-up grime – now admit enough UV radiation to pose a potential danger to museum visitors. To rectify the situation, the Oxford City Council is paying to have UV-protective film applied to the glass roof. The film will eliminate virtually all UV radiation, but it won’t help the temperature inside the museum much. For that, the City Council will spring for a new air conditioning system.
UV radiation and solar heat gain are significant issues in buildings of all ages. Glass admits light but traps heat inside of a building. This excess heat build-up can cause increased energy consumption, as building occupants try to combat the change in temperature with air conditioning.
A different approach is to reduce UV radiation, and to employ strategies that admit desirable light without promoting an increase in temperature. Glassprimer glass paint is a proven UV-resistant coating that allows light transmission while reflecting the UV radiation that exacerbates solar heat gain. Glassprimer glass paint is cost-effective, and can be tinted to match any color from any major paint manufacturer’s color palette. It is specially engineered to bond with glass, and once cured, will not peel, chip or fade.
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Photo Credit: Barnyz, via Flickr.com