Opening Rooflight Systems

18 May 2023

How opening rooflight systems can enhance your interior design.

When embarking on a new build or renovation project, opening rooflight systems brings a whole heap of benefits. As well as adding an abundance of natural light into the internal space below, these advanced systems can enhance the functionality of a space by providing ventilation and even roof access.

Kitchens in particular can benefit hugely from an opening rooflight, helping to ventilate the space and circulate the airflow to eliminate any cooking smoke or fumes. Automated rooflights can be integrated to work as part of a complete smart home automation system from IndigoZest, or as a standalone product operated via a simple wall switch.

Automated Rooflight System at Gravetye Manor

IQ Glass has designed the MARS, which stands for modern automated rooflight system. The sliding system is manufactured in the UK and is perfect for achieving specialised, innovative roof solutions. The sliding rooflight can be used to provide roof access to terraced houses where sky gardens and roof decks are present, or simply to create highly ventilated spaces with uninterrupted views of the sky.

Due to the completely bespoke design of the Modern Automated Rooflight System (MARS), there are little to no limitations on shape, structure, or size. The standard motor can take a weight of up to 320kg and there are larger motors available to accommodate larger pane sizes. The frame and cassette components are fully thermally broken, to eliminate the risk of condensation build-up and prevent any heat from escaping during the colder months.

automated sliding rooflight MARS project example

Although the MARS is an extremely advanced rooflight system, it still maintains the most minimal design possible. The minimal design is achieved by structurally bonding the glass into the frame and bringing the internal ceiling finishes over the internal frame for a frameless effect.

Where roof access is not required or for smaller openings, the ARES has been designed to offer an automatic ventilation source. The automated rising electric rooflight pushes the boundaries of modern opening rooflight design by utilising the highest quality materials and technologies to add ventilation to internal living spaces in the most sophisticated way.

ARES Automated Rising Electric Rooflight

The ARES opens on hinges, using automated actuators to provide a seamless opening motion. Although the system was designed to operate on a hinged system, IQ Glass have developed the rooflight further to accommodate bespoke shapes, such as circular designs. Eliminating the restrictions that hinges put in place, an alternate lifting option ensures the shape of the rooflight will not restrict the design.

If a shape without parallel sides is specified, multiple actuators are placed around the system and the sash lifts vertically, as a whole. Thanks to the high-performing motors, a smooth venting action with soft top closing are easily achievable. The system is thermally broken, again to ensure there is no condensation build-up in high humidity areas such as the kitchen. The lifting mechanisms on the ARES are concealed, for the most minimal finish.

ARES rooflight, open for ventilation

Both the MARS and ARES can be specified with a dew point detector, which works by automatically detecting the humidity levels within the space and opening the rooflight if a pre-determined humidity level is reached. Another integration that is available for both systems is a weather sensor. Rooflights with a weather sensor integration will automatically close if rain, strong wind, or snow is detected, protecting the internal living spaces below from the elements.

The newest member of the opening rooflight family from IQ Glass is the HERA, which offers an automated sliding option to grant roof access and create functional sky gardens. The HERA can be specified with the same technical integrations as MARS and ARES and is perfectly suited to terraced homes wishing to make the most of their outdoor space by extending upwards.

HERA - high specification electric rooflight automation

The glass specification used in overhead glazing is an extremely important factor to consider, to ensure the safety of the occupants in the event of a breakage. Both IQ Glass and Sieger Systems use toughened glass with a laminated inner pane for all overhead glazing, which would hold the glass in place and prevent any damage if a breakage occurred. As an additional safety measure, the glass is structurally bonded to the frame. This makes the opening systems both safer and more minimal.

Birds eye view of a MARS, within a glass box structure

Another option for opening rooflights is the Sieger Automated Rooflight system, which is available on a supply only basis. The thermally broken, automated rooflight or Skylight pairs traditional aesthetic with state-of-the-art technology for an efficient, electronically operated rooflight or Skylight. The Sieger opening rooflight can be specified with optional integrations such as weather sensors and is operated with a wall switch and remote control as standard.

Blind specialists Grants Blinds have designed systems that are specifically intended for use on opening rooflight systems. Their concealed blind systems are perfect for maintaining the most minimal designs, appearing only at the click of a button. As well as the rooflight systems themselves, blinds can be integrated to work as part of a smart home automation system.

Concealed blind, half open covering rooflight

For larger spaces, or commercial properties looking for the wow factor, retractable glass roofs are available. The highly engineered roof glazing solution has been designed with a modular approach, meaning there is no limit to the number of modules that can be used next to each other and the system can be used to provide shelter to vast commercial spaces such as an outdoor dining space.

Specifying a retractable glass roof can greatly improve the functionality of a space, allowing restaurants and bars to offer al fresco dining without having to worry about the weather ruining the experience. Particularly now, in the wake of a pandemic, outdoor dining and drinking are preferred by many as the safer option.

Retractable glass roof in al fresco dining environment

For more information on opening rooflight systems or to see some of the advanced glazing systems at the showroom, contact us on 01494722880.

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