Glass For Architecture

Glass For Architecture

In the construction of modern buildings, glass has become an essential component. With modern technology, the permutation of glass types has been both varied and exciting. There have been applications in both small and large amounts - from kitchen wall splash backs, cabinetry and staircase balustrades and threads, to laminated double-glazing for office buildings and skyscrapers

So which type of glass is suitable for what kind of application?

Here we take a look at the different types of glass, their classifications and specifications, as well as the way glass is used.
Glass Types

1. Float Glass/Annealed Glass
- Distortion free
- Precision-flat
- Clearly transparent

2. Tinted Float Glass
- Solar control and absorption of solar radiation energy
- Cuts down heat transmittance 
- Reduce cooling load
- Glare reduction
- Tinted green, blue or grey

3. Low-Iron Glass
- High clarity and transparency
- Low iron oxide content
- No green tint that is inherent in normal float glass

Thermal Treatment
Glass is treated with heat to enhance its properties. The main benefit of the process is to strengthen the glass. Basically, float glass is heated to near softening point and then quenched by blasting cool air rapidly. The surface of the glass is compressed as it is cooled faster than its core, thus compressing it.

1. Tempered glass
- Impact resistance - can withstand the static load resistance 3 to 5 times that of float glass and impact resistance of 5 to 10 times of float glass of same thickness
- Temperature resistance - it can withstand temperatures of 150 degree Celsius compared to float glass which can only withstand temperatures of 40-50 degree Celsius
- Safety - breaks into small pieces instead of float glass which breaks into large knife-like shards that can cause injury

It is applied in shower screens, balustrades, signage, doors and windows and interior and other decorative uses due to its safety properties. It is also known as safety glass.

2. Heat Strengthened glass
- Impact resistance - is 2 times stronger than float glass
- Temperature resistance - it can withstand temperatures up to 295 degree Celsius. 
- Safety - breaks into larger pieces but holds within its frame as intermediate glass pieces support each other
- Impurities - there is virtually no impurities of nickel sulphide so there is little risk of spontaneous breakage.