Preparing for the Storm:
Window and door system provides creative options with added value—integrated hurricane protection.
During the past decade, a plethora of new building products have
provided architects with an ever-expanding selection of
technologically advanced materials that both enhance the
architect's aesthetic vision and contribute to the integrity of the
building envelope and interior environment.
In the area of hurricane protection, WISP Window and Door Systems
is not only impervious to the effects of high winds, driving rain
and airborne debris, it can be deployed from the inside, without
ladders, hammers or special equipment. WISP's unique aluminum frame
is particularly well suited for use in metal-frame and metal-clad
buildings in coastal regions where high winds and intense storms
often challenge the integrity of the building envelope. The WISP
system's patented components are designed to work as a unit.
To ensure that all of the components in the WISP system operate
together to produce optimum results, we engineered the window
frame: beefing it up to a robust 6 inches to fit flush to the
drywall in most applications. Using heavy-gauge extruded aluminum,
our engineers fabricated the frame with industrial-strength thermal
breaks a full 24-mm wide and double-sealed joints in each corner,
utilizing a foam gasket and liquid seam sealant. A deep sill pan in
the bottom captures thermal condensation and rainwater, and
channels it away from the interior of the building through a sloped
weep system fabricated into the sill.
Patented side guides retain the storm shade, locking it into
place if impacted. The tested storm shade, made from the same
tough, flexible, tightly woven synthetic fiber used in radial car
and truck tires, is finished with a specially formulated coating
that makes it weather resistant, water repellent and pliable,
with the strength and the flexibility to deflect wind-borne debris
propelled in hurricane-force winds of up to 205 mph. The shade is
translucent, allowing light to illuminate the interior while the
shade secures the building from elements of a severe storm.
All of our windows and doors are fabricated with conventional
3/4-inch insulated glass. In the event the glass is broken, the
storm shade prevents wind-driven water and debris from entering the
building envelope. After the storm, cleanup is quick, easy and
affordable since any local glazer can replace the glass. LoE3- 366
(low E cubed-366) performance glass is available as a
WISP windows and doors provide everyday benefits as well. The
storm shade was also designed to
deflect significant solar heat gain in the summer and heat loss in
the winter. The translucent shade filters the light, blocking
harmful UV rays to help prevent furnishings from fading. When not
in use, the shade rolls neatly into place inside the head of the
window. The system requires very little maintenance; if necessary
the storm shade can be cleaned easily with a non alkaline-based
cleaner and warm water.
The precise construction of WISP windows and doors makes them
ideal for use in metal-framed and
Our engineers designed the WISP frame to work with the tight
tolerances achieved by metal fabricators, employing precise
tolerances of 1/8-inch (vertical) and 3/32-inch (horizontal) to
create a very rigid exterior frame strong enough to sit directly on
the sill-plate of an opening without racking. The larger frame also
lessens the gap space around the window, which in turn provides
potential cost savings. It requires less caulk or fewer shims than
a 3.25-inch depth vinyl or aluminum window. No marble stoops or
drywall returns are necessary to trim out the opening, although the
opening can easily be finished with moldings for a traditional
appearance. The frame jam is pre-punched for ease of installation
and does not need anchors in the sill on units under 5 feet wide.
WISP windows and doors can be installed directly into metal
cladding installation systems. No flanges are needed for a
traditional installation, but a Florida flange is available for
flush mounting WISP windows to an exterior façade. And unlike
conventional windows, WISP window systems can be installed from the
inside, giving the installer the option to work from a solid floor
rather than an exterior scaffolding.
WISP door systems have been engineered with the same attention
to detail. The two-panel, sliding-glass doors glide quietly and
effortlessly on special rollers designed to protect the operating
system from the corrosive effects of saltwater. The storm shade has
been counterbalanced to distribute the weight evenly all the way
up, enabling it to move smoothly up and down with ease.
WISP Window and Door Systems can be grouped, stacked or
mixed-and-matched to create a
custom "window wall" with built-in storm protection that's ideal
for storefronts, restaurants and commercial, multistory structures,
as well as single-family residences. Architects designing with
metal can add curves, eyebrows and contours by shaping the cladding
material around the window opening. All WISP windows and doors are
custom built to specification and can be custom sized in increments
as small as 1/4 inch. WISP windows and doors are available in
bronze or white aluminum finishes. Matching aluminum muntins can be
custom placed into the insulated glass panels to
add depth or style.
Automated WISP shades
Home Manager ST, our proprietary, new, soon-to-be web-based
interface program, allows owners to deploy their WISP systems
electronically. The affordable, wireless and cord-free system can
be accessed through a web-based interface using a computer or
Android smartphone. It can be programmed to operate the shades,
individually or in groups, and, if desired, control compatible
lights, sensors and thermostats. Motorization kits for the WISP
Window and Door System will be available after June 1, 2011, and
can be easily installed without tools.
WISP Window and Door Systems have been certified by NAMI, are
recognized by the International
Hurricane Protection Association, are listed on the Florida
Product Approval database and comply with local and state building
Fred Higgins is the senior product engineer for WISP Window and
Door Systems, Pensacola, Fla.
For more information, visit www.wispwindow.com.