Glatz AG

UV protection

Every sunshade offers protection from the sun, but not all protect you from its dangerous ultraviolet (UV) rays. Although only a fraction of their solar radiation reaches the earth, UV rays are harmful to the skin because of their intensity.

According to Germany's Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS), UV rays are subdivided into the wavelength ranges UV-A (315 – 400 nm), UV-B (280 – 320 nm) and UV-C (100 – 280 nm). Whilst UV-C radiation is completely absorbed by the earth's upper atmosphere, UV-A and UV-B rays penetrate all the way to the earth's surface. It is the energy of UV-B rays that has a particularly severe effect on the skin, not only causing symptoms such as sunburn but also increasing the risk of skin aging and skin cancer.  

What does radiation protection have to do with buying a sunshade?

UV radiation is not visible to humans and cannot be perceived by the other senses either. Individuals' exposure to UV radiation and the associated health hazards are largely determined by their behaviour outdoors. A sensible approach to the sun and appropriate protective measures such as a sunshade with UV protection can reduce the risks of skin cancer, skin damage or premature skin aging. A sunshade by GLATZ not only provides shade but also guarantees the maximum possible UV protection of more than 98 per cent for all sunshade covers.

What determines the UV protection factor?

The UV protection factor (UPF) indicates how much longer you can stay in the sun without suffering skin damage when using sun protection products such as a sunshade by GLATZ. The UV protection effect of a sunshade fabric cover depends on various factors such as the weight, thickness, colour and material. These should always be taken into account when choosing a sunshade.

Bear in mind that the heavier a material is, the thicker its texture, so fewer harmful UV rays are able to penetrate. Darker shades of colour also provide greater UV protection. In terms of material, synthetic fabrics such as polyester and acrylic offer a far higher UV protection factor than cotton, which decomposes over time due to UV radiation. In contrast, the polyester fabrics used by GLATZ are UV stabilised and last many times longer depending on the intensity and duration of UV exposure.

To avoid confusion: coatings such as Teflon® and Scotchgard® only reduce water permeability and have no effect on a fabric's UV resistance.

What standard is our UV protection declaration based on? 

With the “UV Protection” test label, GLATZ guarantees maximum possible UV protection of more than 98 percent for all sunshade fabric covers in the fabric classes 2, 4 and 5.

According to the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency, all fabric covers by GLATZ are rated with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) of 50+ in line with the Australian standard on the sun protection scale from 15 to 50. This seal is awarded only to products that offer more than the maximum sun protection factor of 50.

GLATZ seeks even greater certainty: to determine more precise protection ratings, the sunshade manufacturer also has all of its covers tested for UV permeability in line with the internationally recognised UV standard (AS/NZS399) and certified by the independent SQTS (Swiss Quality Testing Services) laboratory. The result of this is the GLATZ “UV Protection” testing label, which guarantees the maximum possible UV protection of more than 98 per cent for all fabric covers in the GLATZ material classes 4 and 5.

How is the UV protection rating declared by GLATZ calculated as a percentage?

All GLATZ sunshade fabric covers carry the “UV Protection” testing label: 

The percentage indicated on the label is derived from the UPF rating and calculated on the basis of the data determined by SQTS using the following formula:

Percentage = 100 – 100/ UPF (SQTS)

In other words: if 99 per cent of the harmful UV rays are filtered out by the fabric, only 1 per cent – i.e. one hundredth – can penetrate it and reach the skin. As a result, with GLATZ's UV protection it takes 100 times longer for the skin to absorb the same dose of radiation than without UV protection. This factor of a hundred is defined as the sun protection factor.

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