Glass has much to offer architects, both artistically and structurally. It can assume any appearance, fulfill many functions and is capable of great strength and versatility. The trend toward the increased use of glass for both exterior and interior applications is global, as architects and designers continue to push the envelope by using glass in non-traditional ways. In response to this increased demand, a rebirth in the usage of decorative glass has emerged with new advancements in technology that have opened the door to endless design possibilities.
The tinted or colored glass (Bronze, Gray, Green, Blue, etc.) helps reduce glare and by absorbing the suns heat it reduces energy consumption creating a more comfortable interior without obstructing the view outside.
What is Low-E glass?
There are two basic classes of low-E films: the vacuum-deposited, silver-based films and the pyrolytically deposited doped semiconductors. Pyrolysis is a technique in which high temperature, usually above 900 F, is used to initiate the film-forming process. These two types are often referred to as hard coats and soft coats, with the pyrolytically deposited films usually falling into the hard-coat class and the vacuum-deposited coating in the soft coat-class. Since with either class the useful thermal properties occur when they are assembled with the film on the inside of an insulating glass unit, the hardness classification is of little importance. Both types have a high transmission and the choice of one over the other is a matter of building size, location and the thermal and optical properties required.
A new development in low-E films is a hybrid of the older, low-transmitting, reflective films and low-E coatings. Many architects use filmed glass for aesthetic as well as performance reasons. Low-E films were developed originally for the residential market where low color and low reflection with high transmission are valued, along with the improved thermal performance. In the commercial market, a distinctive appearance can be a positive attribute, and high transmission, especially in larger buildings, means higher heat loads. To address these concerns filming companies have modified low-E films to have lower transmission, higher reflection and very good solar properties: low U-values and low shading coefficients. This trend is likely to continue with the introduction of different color films that have light transmissions high enough to minimize internal lighting requirements giving the building a natural, open feel, but have the look on t he outside of reflective coatings and good solar properties.
Some of the advantages of Low-e glass are:
> Lower winter heat loss
> Lower summer heat gain
> Block re-radiated solar heat
> Reduce damaging UV rays
> Reduce condensation and save heating/cooling dollars
Applications of Curved Glass
Windows with bent glass framed by wood, metal, or vinyl sashes offer a unique combination of stately design and economical execution. Curved glass adds new dimension to individual bay
windows or column arrangements with its fluid looks and outward transparency.
Typical bent products used in windows include insulating units assembled with heat-strengthened
or annealed glass, with the exception of those instances where safety tempered or safety laminated glass is required by the law, thermal or mechanical loads, or applicable codes. Less prone to spontaneous breakage than tempered glass, heat-strengthened glass offers twice the strength but with fewer shape possibilities than annealed glass of the same thickness.
Ideas include bent glass with the antique reproduction appearance of our flat seeded annealed glass, insulating space argon gas fills, self-cleaning or energy saving low-emissivity coatings.
Bent glass eliminates harsh angles and two-dimensional perspectives with smooth curves that draw customers inside entrances to merchandise. These outside or in-mall installations offer retailers a productive investment in appearance and function.
Typical bent products used in store fronts include single glazed pieces of safety tempered or safety laminated glass. Tempered glass offers four times the strength and luminous solid edges,
but with fewer shape possibilities than laminated glass of the same thickness assembled with plies of annealed glass.
Ideas include bent glass with low-iron content for ultra-clarity, arris flat polished edges, and anti-reflective coatings.
Partitions with flair can be created in commercial or residential settings with the use of curved glass. By soothing the efficiency of straight walls, bent glass uses translucence and shape to create privacy while maintaining accessibility.
Typical bent products used in partitions include single glazed pieces of safety tempered or safety
laminated glass. Tempered glass offers four times the strength and luminous solid edges, but with
fewer shape possibilities than laminated glass of the same thickness assembled with plies of
Ideas include bent glass with low-iron content for ultra-clarity, rice paper laminations, and translucent finishes using acid-etched or sandblasted glass.
An impressive way to crown any traditional or contemporary structure is through the addition of an inspiring bent glass dome. By allowing the uncluttered light of the sky to flood a large area, curved glass domes add practicality as well as a sense of majesty.
Typical bent products used in domes include triangular shape cut insulating units assembled with safety laminated glass on lites placed directly overhead. Laminated glass assembled with plies
of heat-strengthened glass offers twice the strength but fewer shape possibilities than laminated glass assembled with plies of annealed glass of the same thickness.
Ideas include bent glass with low-emissivity coatings, insulating space argon gas fills, and translucent finishes using opaque lamination, acid-etched, or sandblasted glass.
By adding the crisp light of sky and clouds to long spaces, barrel vault skylights using bent glass are an essential feature for airports, malls, and corridors. Curved glass adds openness to any
concourse while avoiding harsh segmented roof silhouettes.
Typical bent products used in barrel vaults include insulating units assembled with safety laminated glass on lites placed directly overhead. Laminated glass assembled with plies of heat-strengthened glass offers twice the strength but fewer shape possibilities than laminated glass assembled with plies of annealed glass of the same thickness.
Ideas include bent glass with low-emissivity coatings, insulating space argon gas fills, silkscreen ceramic frit, and translucent finishes using opaque lamination, acid-etched, or sandblasted glass.