Recent research by an environmental psychologist at the University of Utah suggests bird-safe glass installed at the College of Law has successfully reduced the number of birds killed each year due to collisions with glass windows.
Barbara Brown, a professor with the Department of Family and Consumer Studies in the College of Social and Behavioral Science at the University of Utah, explored the effectiveness of bird-deterrent film in glass in an issue of the journal PeerJ. (Read the full article here).
The design feature at the College of Law was one sustainability initiative implemented when the building opened in 2015. Researchers estimate that hundreds of millions of birds are killed each year due to collisions with glass windows. The front of the College of Law building is a multiple story atrium designed to bring in natural light and connect with the surroundings. The College of Law used ORNILUX® Bird Protection Glass for the atrium’s large window facade.
ORNILUX® Bird Protection Glass is manufactured by Arnold Glas and is one product relying on biomimicry. Biomimcry is a practice of studying and applying natural models and processes to address problems. For example, to reduce bird-window collisions, Arnold Glas looked to Orb weaver spiders who build their webs with ultraviolet (UV) silk. The reflective properties of the UV threads protect the web by alerting birds to its presence. Birds fly around the web and do not destroy it. The ORNILUX® Bird Protection Glass has a UV-reflective coating that mimics the ultraviolet thread patterns found in Orb spider webs. Though the UV reflections are not visible to us, birds see the window as a web and are deterred from flying into it.