New Research Committee, VIG Share Limelight at IGMA General Meeting

February 3rd, 2012 by DWM Magazine

The Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance’s (IGMA) is holding its annual general meeting in Tempe, Ariz., all this week, January 31 to February 4. “We have four ballots, three of which have passed already,” said Marg Webb, executive director of IGMA. “We’ll have two published this year, if not three.”

Eighty people are attending the meeting, and Webb said the number is encouraging as it represents a growth in attendance.

The newly created Emerging Technology and Innovation Committee met on February 1. “The decision to create this committee was to handle more research-oriented activities as opposed to standards oriented activities,” said Tracy Rogers, director of industry relations and advanced technology, IGMA. The task groups under that committee are: Gas Permeability; Mocon; Vacuum Insulated Glazing (VIG); and NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory) Advanced Fenestration Testing.

“The VIG is a new task group that will develop a white paper, then a test standard specific for VIGs,” Webb said. “We’ll have a huge group. Twenty-five people have already signed up.”

The white paper should be done in the next year, said Dave Cooper, advanced IG program leader at Guardian Industries of Auburn Hills, Mich., and president of IGMA. “Another item on the VIG task group is to review VIG documents/collateral related to specifications/protocol worldwide,” he said. “We also talked about a VIG education document, more like a presentation, and VIG glazing guidelines.”

IGMA has an existing standard for IGs, but not VIGs, Cooper said. “Another topic we discussed was VIG certification, including quality, audit and safety programs,” he said.

VIGs don’t fall under IGs, as far as testing goes, Rogers said. “There is no standardized testing for VIGs, manufacturers do their own testing,” he said.

The Gas Permeability group will probably look at how IG is tested for gas retention, Rogers said.

“Gas permeability is a factor, but not the only factor, of gas loss,” Webb added. “So, it’s going to be much more expansive now. That’s what the manufacturers wanted. Two questions consumers ask [are]: Is it there, and how long will it stay? We’ll do a field correlation study on gas-filled units.”

Mocon of Minneapolis, which does testing for gas permeability inside IGs, will look at measuring exotic gases, such as krypton and argon, she said.

The NREL group is developing a means for more stringent testing for IGs, Rogers said. “The NREL is starting research with some new equipment that they’ve developed, but testing hasn’t started yet,” he said.

The Technical Services Committee met on February 2. The task groups under that committee are: Glazing Guidelines; Multiple Cavity IGU; and Thermal Stress.

The Glazing Guidelines group reviewed how to use capillary tubes, Rogers said.

“The multicavity IGU design guidelines for triple and quads will be out this year,” Webb said. “We have a 20-page document that lists items that the manufacturers need to think about, such as special handling requirements. It’s now gone through the ballots and will go to the Technical Services Committee for ballot next.”

The Certification and Education Committee meets today.

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