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Glass: Definition and Its Types

May 08, 2023
Last updated on November 24, 2023

Conventional glass is prone to shattering and breaking, posing a safety risk. Tempered glass, also known as safety glass, is a durable and resistant material that has undergone thermal or chemical strengthening processes. It is widely used in buildings, automobiles, among other applications that have human traffic around them.

The purpose of this blog is to explore different types of glass and the features of tempered glass. We will also provide useful information on how to find tempered glass manufacturers, the importance of different types of tempered glass - toughened glass, laminated glass, heat-strengthened glass and their various applications.

Types of Glass:

Annealed Glass or Regular Glass:

Annealed glass is regular glass that has not undergone strengthening processes. It is relatively weak and can break easily. Upon breakage it breaks into sharp shards that can cause injuries. Annealed glass is commonly used in picture frames, mirrors, and non-load-bearing applications.

When this regular glass is treated using controlled thermal or chemical procedures to increase its strength, it is known as toughened/heat strengthened glass.

clear glass

Toughened Glass:

Toughened glass is commonly known as safety glass. Literally speaking, toughened glass is a type of tempered glass though the terms are used interchangeably. Tempered glass involves heating regular glass to high temperatures, followed by quick cooling. This process makes the glass significantly break resistant. In the rare case of breakage, a toughened glass breaks into small harmless blunt pieces.

Toughened glass is known for its high strength, durability, and resistance to thermal stress. It is commonly installed in various architectural applications in the building industry, automotive window systems, among others

toughened glass

Heat Strengthened Glass:

Heat-strengthened glass is created by heating regular glass to a lower temperature than toughened glass and then cooling it slowly. This process creates a material that is twice as strong as annealed glass but not as strong as toughened glass. Heat-strengthened glass is commonly installed in building facades and curtain walls.

Laminated Glass/Laminated Safety Glass:

Laminated glass (also called “Laminated Safety Glass”) is made using a special process. In this process, a layer of Poly Vinyl Butyral (PVB) is inserted between multiple layers of glass. This process creates a flexible and sturdy material that is highly resistant to breakage. Laminated glass is commonly used in automobile windshields and applications that are vandal proof (to prevent a break-in). It also offers superior sound insulation.

Toughened laminated glass combines the strength of tempered glass with the added safety of the laminated glass. It's highly resistant to impact, thermal stress, and cracking/breakage. It offers higher strength and durability for added safety. It’s ideal for use in high-risk areas, that deem extreme safety

Toughened Glass Thickness:

The thickness of toughened glass varies depending on the application. Generally, the thickness ranges from 4 mm to 12 mm, with 6 mm being the most common thickness. However, for high-risk applications, such as balconies and skylights, 12 mm toughened glass is recommended for added safety. 12 mm toughened glass is commonly installed in buildings that require high strength and durability.

Toughened Glass Design and Partition:

Toughened glass can be customized to suit different design requirements as per aesthetics. Toughened glass design can include patterns, textures, and colours. The design options range from clear to opaque and can be customized with various patterns, such as frosted or tinted. Toughened glass partition and doors are also popular interior design elements in commercial and residential spaces. They provides modern and sleek look while maintaining privacy, safety, and durability.

toughened glass

Finding Toughened Glass Manufacturers:

If you are looking for toughened glass manufacturers, you can search for "glass shop near me" or "toughened glass/toughened glass shop near me" online. There are numerous options to choose from.

You can also search for local glass shops near you that offer custom toughened glass solutions. However, it is important to choose a reliable and experienced manufacturer to ensure the quality and safety of the glass. Saint-Gobain has a network of certified toughened glass manufacturers known as Saint-Gobain Assured Processors. They manufacture toughened glass as per high quality standards. The final product also comes with a Saint-Gobain logo to ensure that the product has been made with Saint-Gobain Glass and is of assured quality.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the typical thickness of toughened glass or toughened safety glass??

Toughened safety glass can range in thickness from 4 mm to 12 mm depending on the application.

What are the design and pattern choices for toughened glass?

Toughened glass can be customized with diverse designs and patterns, including clear, frosted, and tinted.

Is there a glass type that is superior to toughened glass?

Toughened glass is one of the most powerful, effective, and long-lasting forms of glass available. This makes it an excellent choice for applications that require safety and security. However, there are other types of glass that may be more appropriate depending on the specific needs of the project, such as laminated glass for vandal proof and overhead installations.

Is it safe to walk or sit on 12mm toughened glass?

While 12mm toughened glass is extremely strong and can support a significant amount of weight, it is not recommended to walk on it if not installed properly. Even though it can withstand impact and pressure, it is important to follow the manufacturer's guidelines and use caution when managing toughened glass

Can toughened glass be shattered using a hammer?

Although toughened glass (also known as tempered glass) is difficult to break, it can be shattered using an emergency escape hammer.




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