There is a vast range of glazing solutions, systems, glass types, and more available on the market. With a range of technical terms and language that can make it all a bit of a minefield.
Glass today has seen a series of technical advances and innovations. While still used primarily in windows and doors, glass can now also be used as a construction material in itself.
To help with some technical language used in the structural glass field, the team at Clear Living Ltd has pulled together some most popular glass solutions and the terminology that accompanies them.
Technical glazing terms
Acoustic insulation – reduces the amount of noise passing through the glazed area.
Air permeability – how much air can travel through a window or door system when it is closed. Checking sealing, installation, and manufacturing. Ideally, you need a little air flowing through as possible.
Anti-reflective glazing – a treatment that is applied to glass to support the reduction of light reflectance.
British Standards – set guidelines and requirements that UK windows and doors must meet.
Casement windows – a window system that is attached to the frame by two or more hinges.
Curtain walling – a non-load bearing, thin, aluminium framed wall encompassing glass panes.
Double glazing – two panes of glass.
Façade – the front/face of a building.
G factor – measures the volume of solar energy/heat entering a property through the glass solution in place.
Impact resistance – BS EN 12600 is the European standard for measuring the impact resistance of glass, monitoring the effect on overall performance.
Insulating glass – two glass panes are separated by a spacer and sealed with air or gas.
Multipoint locking system – a mechanism that improves window or door security.
Non-insulating glass – fire-resistant, single pane glass.
RAL colours – a series of standardised colours suitable for techniques such as powder coating.
R-value – the level of resistance to heat flow.
Safety glass – glass that cannot break or has the capability of breaking safely.
Self-cleaning glass – glass that can stay cleaner for longer due to its ability to break down organic dirt.
Solar control – with large structural glass solutions such as glass walls, floors, roofs, and windows, a lot of natural light can flood into the property; this increases the volume of solar radiation entering the same space.
Thermally toughened glass – glass that is resistant to mechanical and thermal stress.
U value – determines the thermal performance of glazing installations and measures the rate of heat loss on the property. U values are tested under BS EN 6731998.
UV transmittance – how much solar energy is transmitted by the glass panes.
Wind load – the value of the force applied to an external building due to the wind.
Structural glass systems
Minimal glazing – involves glass installations where both the glass panel and the frame are sleek and minimal. Inconspicuous in their appearance, minimal glazing solutions are incredibly aesthetically pleasing, modern, and extremely stylish.
Within this range, you will also find “float glass,” even, flat glass panels that let in an abundance of light and connect your inside world with the outside.
Minimal glazing solutions are robust and structurally secure. With this design, frames no longer have to be the main feature.
Frameless glazing – a seamless glazing option that includes no obvious signs of a frame around the perimeter of the window. Now you can create a wall of glass providing you with unobstructed views.
Frameless glazing solutions work as frames are hidden in the surrounding structure, allowing for more flexibility and creativity in design.
Creating a sense of a free-flowing structure, frameless glazing can open up spaces, make areas look effortlessly contemporary, and maximise the volume of light coming into a room.
Safe, secure, and all-around energy efficient.
Invisible corners – combined with minimal framing, this glazing option is creative, stylish, and bold.
Constructed entirely of glass, invisible corners help connect all parts of your view both outside and in.
Glass in these systems is bonded with adhesive at the undetectable join and is suitable for both double and triple glazing.
Switchable glass – at the touch of a button, you can now change your glass from transparent to opaque and back again.
Also known as intelligent glass, you now have the option of increasing your privacy through a flexible glazing solution that is also user-friendly.
Structural glass – structural glass is a glazing solution that is vital to the structure of a building, with the glass panels used bearing some weight from the structure.
Now you can create large structural glass designs with no obstruction. With the ability to construct on any scale, you can increase the volume of natural light in a property, connect the inside world with the outdoors, and provide a solid structure that still protects you from the elements.
Structural glass glazing also comes with great thermal insulation, resulting in potential long-term energy savings.
Modern and stylish structural glass is growing fast in popularity.