How does a radiant ceiling work?
The term radiant ceiling refers to a suspended – frequently also sound-absorbing – ceiling, which can heat and cool a room. Radiant ceilings work like the sun by means of radiation. When heating warm water flows through the copper pipes on the backside of the panel. In the cooling phase, the Metawell® ceiling element absorbs the heat radiation of the room, whereby the floor, walls and furnishings cool down and as a result the room temperature drops.
Examples of radiant and acoustic ceilings from Metawell
A small selection of Metawell® radiant ceilings and acoustic ceilings – more references of the different ceiling variants can be found in the download area below.
Comfortable and healthy
Radiant ceilings fulfil important requirements on the room climate and promote comfort. Conventional air conditioning systems often do not provide a satisfactory solution because air is not an effective heat transfer medium. In addition, the draft required for cooling is not only felt as unpleasant, it also whirls up dust and germs.
Other advantages resulting from the air conditioning with radiant ceilings are greater comfort and well-being for the employee, which increases the performance of the employee and reduces illnesses and absenteeism.
Energy-efficient and cost-saving
The decisive factor is the operative room temperature felt by the employee, which is also called the sensation temperature. This designates the average of the ambient air and surface temperature of the enclosing areas. In rooms with radiant ceilings, the room air temperature can be set between 1 – 2 ° C lower than the room air temperature with pure air cooling, but with the same perceived comfort. In building technology, heating is expected to save 6 % in energy costs per 1 ° C lowering the room air temperature. In the cooling phase the savings are even higher, because heating is technically cheaper than cooling.
Metawell® radiant ceilings consist of the two particularly good heat-conducting metals aluminium and copper. In comparison to other steel or plasterboard systems Metawell® reacts extremely fast and reaches higher performance values. Radiant ceilings are space-saving, since no radiators reduce or impair the usable space and no large-sized air ducts are necessary in the ceiling cavity. The converted building volume is therefore reduced with the same usable space.
Tightness and compliance with the warranted performance values are guaranteed by the following precautions:
- Use of continuous tubes only
- All pipe ends are calibrated and provided with a protection cap. Pipe ends that are connected via plugs are stiffened with support sleeves.
- Panel coating, glue, heat conducting profile and copper pipes are optimally adjusted to each other
- The copper tubes are manufactured and assembled with machines developed especially for series production
Sound absorption is almost always a problem in modern office buildings, since large windows and core-tempered buildings represent sound-hard surfaces. For relaxed communication, special attention must be paid to the room acoustics.
Using perforated Metawell® radiant ceilings is a good idea. If this is not possible anymore, perforated acoustic ceiling elements from Metawell® without cooling and heating function can also be installed afterwards. Their decisive advantage is that they do not have a thermally insulating effect. So the performance of already installed radiant ceiling surfaces is not reduced at all or only to a small extent.
The high rigidity of Metawell® allows the statics to be weakened by large cutouts for recessed luminaires and high lamp weights, e.g. with pendant lights. As a rule, it is not necessary to hang the lights separately from the raw ceiling. This leaves the lighting technician a great scope for design and saves installation costs. By varying the size of the perforated fields, the surface color and the degree of gloss, light reflection can be customized to the needs of the user, especially with floor lamps and floodlights.
For radiant ceiling sails using LED lights is possible as well. The small lighting can be positioned between the copper tubes, so the heating and cooling capacity is not reduced. The pendants can also be attached subsequently through the existing perforation. For example, pendants with a weight of up to 7.5 kg can be attached to the panels without additional reinforcement. The power cable can be led through the perforation to the backside of the panel.
By using radiant ceilings, a large part of the cooling load of the rooms is carried away by the medium water. The supply air required for the room can be brought into the room at low temperatures, also to discharge cooling loads. The exact values are to be determined by TGA specialist planners. The supply air outlet is concealed on the back of Metawell® radiant ceilings and ensures a horizontal air flow with swirl effect. The outlet cannot be seen from below because it is hidden behind the perforation.
There are three different nominal widths (NW) to choose from: NW 160, NW 200 and NW 250 – each with an installation height of 177 mm. The exact design depends on the room dimensions, the number of sails and the supply air volume flow. A calculation example can be found in the brochure “Smart ceilings”
Modular construction is playing an increasingly important role in the construction process. Nowadays, however, architectural freedom and modular construction are no longer mutually exclusive. In the meantime, all types of buildings can be realized and the equipment of the modular buildings also follows the desire for special features and architectural elegance.
Our acoustically effective radiant ceiling sails are ideal for use in modular construction thanks to the wide range of possible combinations of design, cooling, heating, acoustics, light and air supply.
The high degree of prefabrication of the modular structures is optimally complemented by our ceiling sails. We deliver pre-assembled one-piece and large-format ceiling sails that can be quickly and easily assembled in the module manufacturer’s factory. Due to their high rigidity and low weight, the ceiling sails are suitable for quick installation and also provide good reasons for using them when transporting to the construction site. By using ceiling sails, room floor plans are efficient and can also be adapted to future conditions. Our radiant ceiling sails are made of 100% aluminium and can be recycled after their useful life without separating the materials.
The following Metawell® ceiling variants are available:
Download our BIM objects for Revit or ArchiCAD:
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