The Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance (IGMA) continued discussion on a variety of industry topics this week at its summer conference in Banff, Alberta. These included certification and emerging technologies.

John Kent of the Insulating Glass Certification Council (IGCC) gave an update on the council’s current activities, including its laboratory committee. The board of directors approved funds for an interactive animation lab training and monitoring tool.

Kent said the council has brought in interns to help build an online computer tool that will train lab operators and assist test operators in the correct performance of testing samples.
“This is potentially a huge undertaking, but I think it could have huge benefits from a lot of angles,” he said.

Other key committee activities involve point-supported systems, exotic gas certification and high-altitude gas content, the latter of which the committee will re-convene on to address new concerns that have come up.

Margaret Webb later discussed activities regarding the Design Considerations for Complex Configurations task group. This group’s scope was originally developing test specifications for unusual configurations. “That has come off the table,” said Webb. “What we’re looking at now is developing design considerations similar to the documents for multiple cavity and thermal stress—things to consider if you’re going to manufacturer these units.”

The task group has compiled a draft with 12 factors for consideration, including durability, glass content, glass handling, stepped edges, etc. Consultant Bill Lingnell suggested adding size limitations to the considerations, noting this was a hot topic at the GlassCon Global conference last month.

“Architects like big things, and so do we,” he said, “but there’s going to have to be some limitations put on these units.”

Dave Cooper of Guardian Industries gave a rundown on the TM-4500 Quality Manual, which has been in development for five years and is roughly 60 pages long. He said the document is currently in ballot with the board of directors and will close soon.

The Emerging Technology and Innovation Committee also convened. During that portion of the meeting, Helen Sanders of SageGlass gave a presentation on requirements for Health Product Declarations and Environmental Product Declarations (EPD).

“There are architects that say they won’t specify your products unless you have this,” said Sanders. “Material ingredient hazard disclosures and LCA/EPDs are becoming essential.”
She suggested the group consider an industry-wide EPD for insulating glass.

Sanders also discussed the committee’s work on Product Category Rules (PCR), which are used to develop EPDs. A flat glass PCR and window PCR have previously been completed, and a PCR for processed glass has been through review and will be completed soon.

“As an industry, we will have created the constructs for anyone to do a processed glass EPD if you wish to do so,” she said. “From a glass perspective, we now have everything we need up through the supply chain.”

Lingnell also gave a presentation about ongoing development of a proposed method for thermal stress evaluation in IGUs subjected to solar irradiance.

He said the overall objective is “a combined energy exchange coefficient” and a “simplified design procedure.”

He noted this standard development has already been done with monolithic glass. “Now, we’re focused on insulating glass,” he said, showing attendees charts of data to demonstrate work being done. “We’re making progress, and hopefully by the next meeting, we’ll have something in a format where we can give more examples.”


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