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Behind the Scenes: The Evolution of SageGlass Harmony™

Feb. 21, 2019

Innovation is part of our DNA at SageGlass, and we are constantly working to develop dynamic glass solutions that improve the occupant experience. This process led to the creation of SageGlass Harmony™, the world’s most elegant dynamic glass, designed to provide daylight, heat and glare management while maintaining a seamless connection to the outdoors.

Two key members of our Research and Development team, Cody VanDerVeen and Yigang Wang, share their perspectives on the innovative nature of Harmony and its ability to provide occupants with precise glare control and unobstructed outdoor views.

Q: Can you describe the process for developing Harmony?

R&D: We view Harmony as the latest evolution of our product line. SageGlass LightZone®, which launched in 2015, provides precise heat and glare control while maximizing daylight, but also has defined lines between individual tint zones. This defined visual aesthetic was not necessarily the best fit for all project types. We took this feedback to heart and created Harmony, which delivers the same functional performance as LightZone, with a smooth visual aesthetic created through a natural, seamless in-pane tint transition. We created a prototype to show the concept to our team, and people really liked how it compared to our LightZone product.

The first prototype was installed here at the factory, where there was an opening. We had five to six prototypes until we chose the optimal one for the product – the concept was constantly evolving.

Throughout the process, we showed these prototypes to other members of the R&D group and then marketing and sales, and they loved it. The team also had a client in mind, Millennium Center, who they thought would be the perfect fit for this product.

Q:  What were some of the challenges you faced when developing Harmony?

R&D: We definitely encountered some challenges related to what we could and could not do to ensure the product was capable of being manufactured within the given timeline. On the more technical side, we shared one of the concepts with the Millennium Center team and they liked it, but they soon realized that some aspects of the prototype were not going to meet their needs. We understood the customer’s feedback and spent time developing new ideas. 

Q: What do you feel makes Harmony particularly unique?

R&D: Due to the seamless in-pane tint transitions, Harmony feels more natural when you’re looking out the window and really helps you maintain an unobstructed connection to the outdoors.

Q: How did the R&D team work together to develop Harmony?

R&D: The technical development team worked closely with marketing to help shape the direction of the product and to ensure customer feedback informed every step of the development process. In later phases, we connected with engineers from the manufacturing side to discuss the transition to industrialization to ensure strong yield. Additionally, we had the unique opportunity to work very closely with the European team for Millennium and the end-customer, who was very involved throughout the entire process, to help define the product, develop and modify requirements for the product and evolve the product’s controls. We feel the collaboration across every function of the business was very critical, because these diverse perspectives helped us create the optimal product for the customer.

Q: Did you use any unique technology during this process?

R&D: We significantly evolved our simulation tools to update the concept faster. The experimental prototype took too long and we had six variations to create with very limited time. It’s also hard to try to create prototypes one by one. By conducting modeling simulation analysis, we were able to simulate how the product would work for certain concepts. This process helped a great deal during the first steps of the project.  

 

Through the development of Harmony, our team was able to demonstrate our ongoing commitment to serving customers’ ever-evolving needs, as well as our ability to provide dynamic glass solutions that continue to enhance the occupant experience. We are looking forward to Harmony’s debut installation in Millennium Center.

Interested in learning more about SageGlass Harmony? Please visit our product page.

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