Triple Glazing Takes Center Stage at GANA ConferenceFebruary 23rd, 2012 by DWM Magazine
The rise in triple glazing was a popular topic this morning during a meeting of the Glass Association of North America’s (GANA) insulating glass division in Sarasota, Fla. The meeting was held as part of the group’s annual conference, and included a presentation by Chuck Anderson of Guardian Industries.
“There are a lot of things pushing the industry into the utilization of triples,” said Anderson. Among these, he pointed to Energy Star as one driving factor. “Energy Star’s not a code, but it might as well be,” he said.
Though Energy Star is most prevalent in the residential replacement window market, Anderson said, it could grow on the commercial side as well.
“From the commercial side the [Environmental Protection Agency] would like to have more buildings certified by Energy Star,” Anderson said.
The International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) also plays a role. “If we look at the IECC, we can see that the numbers are getting tighter,” he said.
Currently, Anderson said research is limited into the prevalence of triple glazing, and how much this technology is actually being used in the market. “Trying to find out what’s going on in the triple market is very, very difficult,” he said.
On the commercial side, “The triple market is very small … but people are making inquiries about this,” he added.
Triple glazing presents several challenges, such as load resistance ratings. “Until recently, there wasn’t anything out there to help you evaluate load resistance for triples,” Anderson said.
Visible transmittance also can be a concern. “Anytime you add a piece of glass, visible transmittance is going to go down,” he said.
The Insulating Glass Technical Committee also discussed an inquiry from a group at Texas Tech University that desires to research triple glazing with input from the association. “The goal of this research is to provide the glazing industry with a comprehensive and experimentally verified method for determining strengths of triple insulating glass units,” writes the University in its inquiry.
The committee decided to obtain further information from the university after much discussion.
“There’s definitely a need for further research,” said Greg Carney, a consultant for GANA. “I don’t see anything but a positive for the industry.”