Unboxing The PR60 Pyramid Daylight system From LAMILUX

The 475 team recently traveled to Hanover, NH joining up with LAMILUX partners to assist in the installation the LAMILUX PR-60 pyramid skylight in a retrofit of a historic home. This fully customized roof light will transform the interior kitchen space using daylight. Commitment to performance is standard for LAMILUX, and is reflected in all stages of this unit. This installation is a great educational tool to learn about the importance of each layer as it comes together, from the frame profile to the drainage and flashing.

We’ll be coming back to this project in future posts to discuss the many other 475 solutions utilized, including: Pro Clima airtight system, GUTEX wood fiber board insulation, Havelock wool insulation, and LUNOS heat-recovery ventilation. For the time being, we’ll just glide through this precision-engineered crown jewel of the project: the LAMILUX PR-60 Pyramid Daylight.

Daylight Without Compromise

LAMILUX was founded over 100 years ago in Rehau, Germany, and has become the premier manufacturer of high-performance roof daylighting systems, particularly for large Passive House buildings with glass roof installations. These rooflight systems confer the extensive benefits of daylighting while guaranteeing air- and water-tightness, resistance to condensation and elimination of thermal bridges - all while accommodating an extensive range of building projects because of their versatility.

The PR-60 is a fully-customizable roof glazing system that can accommodate roof pitches ranging from 2 to 90 degrees, and can take a wide variety of shapes and forms. The Hanover house features of a 5 ¾ ft by 13 ft hipped roof light with a 30 degree inclination. Like all PR-60 systems, it consists of thermally broken aluminum frames with triple-pane, argon-filled glass, offering a U-value of 0.12btu/hr/sf and a solar heat gain coefficient of about 30%. Each pane is unique: the inner layer is laminated glass, the middle layer float glass, and the exterior layer tempered safety glass. The entire unit is rated for fall through protection, and can be walked on for maintenance purposes. But all of this protection doesn’t diminish the unit’s capacity to flood the space with brilliant daylight: the visual transmittance of the entire assembly still reaches about 60%.

Let’s Break It Down

Everything is meticulously detailed, starting from the frame profile itself complete through to the drainage and flashing details.

The first layer is the site-built curb which you can see in the image above. In this instance, the timber curb will be insulated with mineral wool insulation. The roofing membrane has been applied over the entire curb for continuous water protection. The high performance Lamilux frame will sit directly on top of this assembly.
The core frame was pre-assembled in the factory for ease of install. This includes all the structural aluminum transoms which can be seen from the interior and are powder coated in the factory.
Lift with the legs, not with the back.
Each glass drops in precisely with all pre-assembled components of the frame. At this point the system is watertight. The weight of the glass in enough to create an adequate seal along the pre installed gasket.
On top of this profile sits specialized rubber gaskets. These gaskets are specially designed for the system and are really the lynch pin for the systems ability to reach such low pitches.

Unique Gasket: The Secret To Performance

No other curtain wall system has a drainage system that can compare. LAMILUX’s gaskets act as a thermal break and drainage plane in one. In this case, they were pre installed in the factory but they can also be installed on site. It has two built-in drainage layer channels (scroll through to the photo of rubber overshooting the corner). These channels sit outside of the airtight layer, thus can be drained directly to the exterior. This can be confusing because these gaskets are located within the assembly. The mechanics of this is that the glass sits on the gasket and is pressure fitted to create an airtight seal. The continuous airtight layer runs from the glass to the gasket, then from the aluminum profile, and finally around to the adjacent glass gasket connection- see sketch above.

The frame is taped to the timber base to prevent moisture from getting into the curb insulation. The tape is completely vapor closed and performs much like our Extoseal Encors.
Mineral wool insulation is inserted to complete the curb’s thermal break.
A termination bar is used to fix the EPDM skirt to the curb.
Close-up of additional insulation providing a thermal break on flashing
Flashing is fixed into place.
The aluminum foam sandwich panel is fixed into position much like the glass panes.
Installing the thermal break along the bottom of the skylight.
Installing the thermal break along the slanted seams.
Close up of thermal break detail.
Here you can see the pressure cap installed....
...This process is a simple mechanical attachment that allows a robust water and airtight connection without the use of wet glazed sealants...
...This type of connection assures longevity and is easy to maintain.
Installation of the beauty cap along the slanted seams.
Installation of beauty cap on the top of the skylight.

Capping It Off

For more on LAMILUX daylight systems, get in touch with Ben Leer, 475’s very own Daylighting Specialist and see our daylighting site at 475daylight.com. Check out the finish shots below.

Finished!
The beautiful, historic, high performance New Hampshire home with its new skylight.
The install team!

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