Summers in India can vary from being pleasantly sunny to unbearably hot. With the advancement in the technology, now people can opt for solar control glass, to meet their respective thermal control needs.

Solar control glass is the combination of solar and glass technologies. Glass windows coated with a low-emittance (low-E) coating block radiant heat transfer. This lowers the amount of heat that passes through a window. Depending on energy needs, different types of low-E coatings allow for high, moderate, or low solar gains. Solar glass is often used to lower energy costs. The tendency of its solar control, depends a lot upon the manufacture of glass.

Low-E coatings are nearly invisible, and made up of layers of metal or metallic oxide on a glass surface. The coating is transparent to visible light. In layered glazing, heat can be transferred between panes of glass, from warmer to cooler. Putting a low-E coated pane in the space between layers of glass helps block that heat. Window technologists in the past filled this gap with air or dry nitrogen.

Today, argon gas are is mostly used between panels, which has improved window performance. This gases is non-toxic and nonreactive. Double-glazed windows with an argon gas fill between panels of low-E-coated glass are designed to reduce heat loss but these allow sunlight in for warmth, or solar gain.

Solar control glass with high solar gain is best suited to windows in cold climates. Low solar gain, or spectrally selective, low-E glazing are more beneficial for buildings and homes in warm climates. These products reduce heat loss in cold weather, yet also reduce heat gain in hot weather. Spectrally selective solar glass, out-performs most tinted and reflective glazing. The level of visible light let in is high in proportion to the amount of heat reduction.

For climates that require both heating and cooling during different seasons, like India, all levels of low-E coating can result in lower annual energy bills. Solar control glass finds application in windows, doors, and skylights. Commercially, it is used for the top surfaces of thermal collectors and photovoltaic modules. The appearance of solar glass is colourless, but can be patterned for optimal solar energy transmission.

High-performance glass products are used across many industries. Recent advances in solar glass include laminated products that boost solar power. This concentrating solar power (CSP) reflectivity provides efficiency and durability.

Apart from solar control features, there are many varieties of glass to choose from, Patterned glass, Frosted glass, Lacquered glass and other variants. These options are attractive to look at and are also eco-friendly.

Glass has played an integral part of construction and architecture through the years. With the dawn of green buildings, architecture glass is becoming an important part of design and construction.

Modern architecture involves the construction of energy efficient buildings. Commercial establishments consume a significant amount of energy today and are slated to consume even more in the future. Green design buildings facilitate sustainable use of resources like energy, water and other materials. Glass is a ‘wonder’ material as it is a combination of many different aspects such as transparency, natural day-lighting, blending of exteriors and we are going to be discussing this in today’s blog.

The energy consumed by the buildings in India can be reduced by various energy efficiency measures. One such is the use of solar control glass. It has been researched and found that upto 90 million tonnes of CO2 emissions could be saved annually by 2020 if all Europe’s buildings were fitted with double-glazed Low-E insulating glass. Similar studies have found that in India, 25% of energy consumed in buildings today is due to artificial lighting. This can be further reduced due to glass and its transparent nature. The heat gain which is the increase in temperature in a space that results from solar radiation can be further reduced with the help of solar control glass. Due to its properties, solar energy is distributed in the form of heat during the winters whereas, solar heat is rejected during the summers. This is called passive solar design and counts as one of the best ways to save energy while, best utilizing the transparent nature of glass. This is a big step towards building energy efficient structures without compromising on the aesthetic front. This type of glass keeps your home/office comfortable throughout the year. The energy required to fully air condition the building is reduced by 8-10% if fitted properly. It is because of all these reasons that that installing solar control glass or in the office provides you with a comfortable environment to live and work in. uPVC windows and doors fitted with these glass have a natural insulator present that seals the cooled air inside a building and can be used for similar purposes.

Ecosense which is a range of high performance glass introduced by AIS go well with the overall architecture of these new age energy efficient buildings. The five categories under which this variety of glass is sold are – Enhance (Solar Control), Exceed (Solar Control Low-e), vEssence (Low-e), Edge(Solar control and Thermal insulated) and Excel (Double Low-e). With these five varieties architects can develop and strike a perfect balance of aesthetics, economy and environment. The range of Ecosense glazing solutions comes in varied shades and helps buildings attain a better energy rating. Glass can definitely make your house more energy efficient while also adding comfort and a spacious feel to it. Another important factor to consider when it comes to uPVC windows and doors is the resistance they have to moisture, atmospheric pollutions and infestation which increases its longevity.

Energy efficiency has become a much bigger feature of architectural design over the years as compared to before. This transition of efficiency into architectural design has happened due to the advancements of architecture and technology. Replacement of inefficient glass in buildings so that central heating and cooling both can be turned down should be a top priority

Commercial building exteriors made of glass are quite a rage today. Apart from looking good, and giving the building an ultramodern vibe about it, the double skin glass facades popular today help in more ways than you can imagine. From regulating temperatures inside the building, to covering up major security loopholes, glass buildings spell the way forward for commercial architecture.

The double-skin facade is a relatively modern adaptation of using different types of glass in architecture. The structure consists of two glass skins placed in such a way that air flows in the intermediate cavity. In this article, we will explore how it is much better than a single skin facade in several ways. The glass skins can be single or double glazing units separated by a distance of 20 cm up to 2 metres. In many such constructions, for protection and temperature regulation purposes, solar shading devices are placed inside the cavity.

The earliest known concept of the Double Skin Façade was first explored and tested by the Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier in the early 20th century. His idea, which he called mur neutralisant (neutralizing wall), involved the insertion of heating/cooling pipes between large layers of glass. He also experimented with different types of glass. The idea, however, did not take form until much later, when Cannon Design constructed the Occidental Chemical Building (New York) in 1980. This building, essentially a glass cube, had a 4-feet-deep cavity between glass layers to pre-heat air in winter.

The recent resurgence of efficient building design has renewed interest in this concept. The double skin facade holds great potential when it comes to optimizing the energy performance of buildings. Listed below are some advantages of using a double skin facade:

Reduced Energy Consumption: By minimising solar gain through the façade, and in turn reducing the cooling load of the building. We are compelled to say, glass house indeed!

Natural Ventilation: Natural ventilation through the cavity is possible without affecting occupant comfort during harsh weather conditions.

Acoustic Insulation: An external skin allows for the same degree of acoustic insulation with the windows open as with the windows closed in conventional single-skin façade construction.

Occupant Comfort and Productivity: Overall, building comfort levels go up. Thanks to increased environmental control and comfort levels, productivity also gets a boost.

Enhanced Security: Double-Skin Façades mostly eliminate the need for projecting bars and vents, which is good news for personnel with security concerns.

The physics behind climate control in such a glass house is the Stack Effect, which occurs when the density of the air between the exterior and interior layers of a double skin façade increases due to the heat generated from the greenhouse effect. Two main operations take place in Double-Skin Façades – summer and winter operations. Each system is utilised to reduce energy consumption. The Gherkin in London is a prime example of a double skin facade structure. One Angel Square in Manchester is yet another example. Both of these buildings achieve great environmental credentials for their size, with the benefits of a double skin key to this. The Gherkin features triangular windows on the outer skin, which cover up the skyscraper all the way to the top. These windows open automatically according to weather and building data, allowing more or less air to cross flow through the building for ventilation.

Glass manufacturing was once upon a time considered as a prized art form before it became a common industry. Sand is an integral part of commercial glass manufacturing and we are going to look at the main reasons why.

It’s been said and presented as an interesting fact that glass is made from sand. Does glass really have its origins in sand or is it just another interesting half truth like 85% of our brains are made of water. The materials used to make the different types of glass may vary but sand is definitely central to the general glass making process.

During the pre-float glass era large panes had to be cast on an iron tray and had to be ground and polished which was a very time-consuming process. The glass that we generally refer to is soda-lime glass. This variety of glass is definitely the most common. The main ingredient as far as soda-lime glass is concerned is silica and this is found in great abundance in sand. Quartz which is another substance found at the sea-side along with SIO2 form the basis of glass production. When we talk about sand we are aware about the fact that sand is formed from a variety of rocks powdered down by the wind and rain over the course of years. Sand along the non-tropical and coastal areas however constitutes mainly of silica and quartz. The second most common type of sand found in areas like the Caribbean is rich in calcium carbonate. This type of sand however cannot be used for the glass making process. Float glass manufacturing later incorporated automated rollers but this process still did not get any easier. In spite of the various advances in technology it is in sand that the origins of glass can be traced back.

There are cases where silica can form a type of glass by itself when sand is hit by lightning. Formation of glass in this manner requires temperatures of at least 1800 degrees. The fusion of silica grains in the sand occurs only at such high temperatures. Naturally occurring glass of this kind has been used since the stone ages for making tools and weapons. Technology has flourished over the ages and now is used in windowpanes and green houses. This type of natural glass formation is quite irregular and any production process that involves lightning is quite hazardous. Glass has under gone a lot of experimentation in order to enhance its properties. Tin is typically used in the manufacture of float glass. Iron is added in order to absorb infrared radiation. Cerium (IV) oxide is responsible for absorbing UV radiation. The soda-lime glass production process these days involves melting silica in a controlled environment along with other materials that enhances its properties. The soda part of soda-lime glass is obtained from sodium carbonate which is added to lower the point at which the silica melts. Lowering the melting point in this manner has the unwanted side effect of making the glass soluble in water. To counteract this calcium oxide is added thus making the glass more durable in order to sustain in rainy and snowy conditions.

Glass manufacturing is an ancient craft and glass blowing can be dated back to 2500B.C. Large glass windows remained an expensive luxury until well into the modern era. This was mainly down to the production methods which made producing anything bigger than a windowpane a very difficult task. Glass is used everywhere as containers, insulators, reinforcing fiber, lenses and decorative art these days and sand is integral to the standard process of glass production.

There are hard core facts and then there are myths built by fragments of imagination. The truth about myths is that there is no tangible truth to it. In this blog, we’re going to bust a few myths associated with glass.

Certain people claim that stained glass windows in old churches are thicker at the bottom than at the top because glass flows slowly like a liquid. We’ve known this isn’t true for quite some time now; these windows are thicker at the bottom owing to the manufacturing of glass. Back during medieval times, a lump of molten glass was rolled, expanded, and flattened before being spun into a disc and cut into panes. These sheets were thicker around the edges and installed such that the heavier side was at the bottom.

But the myth that glass flows has persisted over time. Part of the reason is that glass is a super cooled viscous substance that was vitrified — a massive change in physical properties in which a first-order phases transition was avoided (unlike the standard solid/liquid/gas state of matter transitions).

As a liquid cools, it crystallizes, which increases its viscosity (a measure of its resistance to flow). But when glass cools, it remains stuck in a solid-like state with no crystallization. Essentially, the viscosity of super cooled liquid rises until it becomes an amorphous solid or glass, that we see in glass doors, glass windows etc.

As is the case with liquids, the atoms making up a glass are not arranged in any regular order — and that is where the analogy arises. Liquids flow because there are no strong forces holding their molecules together. Their molecules can move freely past one another, so that liquids can be poured, splashed around, and spilled. But, unlike the molecules in conventional liquids, the atoms in glasses are all held together tightly by strong chemical bonds. It is as if the glass were one giant molecule. This makes glasses rigid so they cannot flow at room temperatures. Thus, the analogy fails in the case of fluidity and flow.

Some of the other myths about glass are

-Glass is just for windows: There is so much more to glass. The possibilities are endless. There are different types of glass that have various uses in all fields from technology to architecture.

While windows are still a primary application for glass in your home, scientists are currently manipulating glass at the molecular level in the hopes of increasing the total capabilities of glass products. In addition, expanding glass’ capabilities may help us to solve some of the world’s toughest issues.

Scientists are currently experimenting with glass that makes high-speed communication possible through optical fiber. Innovations in glass products can also help turn solar energy into electricity and enable thinner, lighter, and more durable display devices.

-All glass is the same: This is certainly not true. Glass is glass, right? Well, modern science is actually rapidly breaking down that common myth. While it might not be widely known, we have been conducting glass research for over 160 years. These studies have led to numerous different patents in glass technology. For example, there is stained glass which is a coloured glass manufactured by adding metallic salts to it, and there is frosted glass which has a translucent surface achieved by a technique called acid etching. Similarly, numerous different types of glass exist.

-Glass doesn’t bend: While most types of glass are certainly not pliable, scientists have actually developed several glass products that are capable of bending. We now have optical fiber cable that it flexible enough to be stapled and bent around corners. We also have ultrathin glass solutions that are capable of being rolled like sheets of paper and flexed like wire.

Architecture has been a crowning achievement for India through the centuries. Various Indian architectural styles have developed due to various reasons and as we move into a new phase; reducing energy consumption, improving safety parameters and enhancing the aesthetics of commercial and residential spaces are in focus. Due to its fragile nature, the use of glass to bring natural light into buildings was earlier restricted only to windows and other small installations. This scenario is changing with glass presenting itself as a viable, attractive and economical option for architects and builders.

The full potential of glass can now be realized by them due to the types of glass and the various types of options available. The types of glass under consideration are tinted glass, tempered glass, laminated glass, acoustic glass, insulated glass units, heat-reflective glass, solar control glass and low-e glass, to name a few. High-performance solar control glasses are best suited for a tropical country like India. This brings us to an important topic of artificial lighting. 25% of energy consumed in buildings today is due to artificial lighting and this can be further reduced due to the transparent nature of glass. Furthermore, the range of solar-control glass such as Ecosense from AIS, provides the benefit of reducing the heat gain in buildings. Its excellent energy saving properties without compromising on the natural light coming inside the building also adds to the brilliant aesthetics that add value to the façade. This process is also reversed by a property called solar gain during the winters thus ensuring that the interiors – and the occupants of the home – feel comfortable at all times. When used and fitted properly there is an 8-10% reduction in the total energy consumption. To further augment the versatility of these glasses there is and observable reduction in Capex because of the lower energy loads required for conditioning the building.

Keeping all this in mind, AIS has introduced, Ecosense which is a range of high performance glass introduced by AIS go well with the overall architecture of these new age energy efficient buildings. The five categories under which this variety of glass is sold are – Enhance (Solar Control), Exceed (Solar Control Low-e), vEssence (Low-e), Edge(Solar control and Thermal insulated) and Excel (Double Low-e). With these five varieties architects can develop and strike a perfect balance of aesthetics, economy and environment. The range of Ecosense glazing solutions comes in varied shades and helps buildings attain a better energy rating. Continuous research and technology advances have made glass safer and more secure. Due to the superior features laminated glass and its varieties are extensively used for doors, windows, facades, canopies, glass flooring, staircases, etc.

Glass is now being used for facades on an unprecedented scale to create remarkable designs. Heat reflective glass, tempered glass, laminated glass, acoustic glass etc help a building achieve a high standard of visual appeal and yield eco-savings.

Energy efficient windows and glass are critical to a building’s energy efficiency. Choosing the right energy efficient glass lets you control how much heat enters or escapes from a building.

As home owners our responsibility towards the planet is increasing every day. We are aware that we need to reduce waste, recycle more and use less energy. An energy efficient home is not just friendlier to the environment but also saves you a lot of money. There are a number of things that we can do to achieve these goals and glass or energy efficient glazing is one major step.

Energy-efficient glazing describes the double glazing or triple glazing use in modern windows in homes. Energy-efficient glazing incorporates coated (low-emissivity) glass to prevent heat escaping through the windows. These windows thermally insulate your home thus improving their energy efficiency and help save money on your heating bills. Solar Control glass is a type of energy-efficient glass designed to prevent heat escaping through your windows to the cold outdoors. One of the best ways to decrease the size of your carbon footprint is to replace existing windows with low e Solar Control glazing. This type of energy efficient glass is essential for rooms or buildings with a high proportion of windows or glass doors, such as conservatories and sun rooms. During winters, the heat entering these spaces are retained thus these rooms can be used for more months of the year. Solar control and low e glass can be used for south and west facing glazing where overheating can become a problem in the summer.

Apart from lowering your bills, energy efficient glass also adds to the property value of your home. Factors such as customised placement of windows around the building and optimal orientation comes into play in energy efficiency. There is no ‘one size fits all’ solution. No single window can claim to ‘make’ a house achieve best green rating. What works well in one home will not necessarily be suited to another in the same location, Two different homes may require different window glass types to achieve the same star rating. And even two identical homes, located in the same climate, may require different windows or glass to achieve a given rating due to their different orientations.

A common misconception is that high performance windows glass is an expensive way of increasing energy efficiency. Economic findings address the financial implications of high performance windows more fully, however, it is safe to say that while windows – even ordinary ones – are a relatively high-value component of a building, they make all the difference between a nice (high market value) house and an awful (unsellable) one. Innovative, energy efficient windows begin to pay for themselves as soon as they are installed. Energy Efficient products like these save you money, help protect the environment and help architects create amazing livable environments. There are certain challenges which the latest technology in manufacturing and designs in architecture can help overcome.

Solar control glass can help reduce energy costs and maintain privacy either at home or in the office. They also provide great solutions for a stylish and cost saving space for years to come.

Cutting down on needless CO2 is the need of the hour and solar control glass comes as really good news in this respect. The technology required to mass produce this variety of glass is available today, and if used properly, can cut down 780 million tonnes of CO2 emissions by the year 2020. In addition to energy savings, home owners would also like to have a reduction in glare, increased privacy and make use of glass to upgrade their homes.

AIS OPAL brand of glass from AIS has been making waves over the last couple of years going from one strength to another – and available in a variety of shades. Taking a big leap in product development and extension, AIS has announced a new product under AIS Opal – “AIS Opal Trendz”, a Frosted glass variant of the Opal series of photovoltaic products that combines vibrant shades with vivid patterns for a delightful play of light and colour. A unique solution for external and internal glazing applications, AIS Opal Trendz presents architects and designers with the opportunity to combine form and function, for the creation of beautiful facades and interiors that will set new benchmarks in style and sensitivity. This solution is a durable one and can hold up for several years. It helps create a feeling of privacy in your home and in doing so, makes it seem interesting. It is a new-age variety of photovoltaic products that helps you keep the inside of your buildings cool. It also helps make a building look stylish and modern.

The coating on this product extends its durability to a large extent. This type of frosted glass comes in Royal Blue, Cool Green, Golden Bronze, Pearl Grey and Aqua Blue to best suit your needs. Generally, the frosted variety of this type of photovoltaic material is a creative and cost-efficient means of designing the windows without diminishing its function. It provides a beautiful surrounding while protecting your privacy. To further add to the design benefit, this product is available in four exciting patterns:Mini Squares, Box Stripes, Cross Hatch,

and T-Weave. This variant is also important from a functional standpoint as tinted and frosted windows are capable of obstructing UV rays. These rays are harmful to the skin and this variety of glass reduces exposure to such harmful rays. In this sense it is definitely an upgrade from regular glass and is a decorative and protective solution for your business or home.

Residential and non-residential buildings that use more energy than necessary to stay cool are a major source of unnecessary CO2 emissions. Solar control glass will have a large part to play in the future of construction, as external temperatures will continue to rise and so will the expectations of comfort. Apart from its environmental benefits, this type of photovoltaic material is also financially beneficial as it can play its part in cutting down costs. In fact, energy savings from its installation outweigh the energy consumed in its actual manufacturing. Solar control and frosted glass are both turning into a trend in home improvement due to advanced manufacturing processes.

Solar control glass reduces heat gain while allowing in a large amount of natural light. Solar control glass covers all architectural requirements, offering solutions for large and small glazed areas of all types of buildings. Due to these benefits solar control glass can be best used to provide comfortable environments to live and work.

Architecture in modern times is characterized by spaciousness and transparency. Large windows have become a feature in recent constructions which help merge the exterior with the interior and also facilitate a great deal of light entering a building’s interior, thereby avoiding excessive use of artificial lighting.

Early versions of solar control glass or sun protective glass was based on glass coloured in a compound. Compared with clear glass, coloured glass increases solar radiation absorption, but it also has a significant effect on the transmitted visible light. As monolithic glass, it reduces the transfer of energy to approximately 60 %, and in insulating glass, combined with a normal pane of clear float glass; it reduces the solar energy transmission to approximately 50 % when the coloured glass thickness is 6 mm. The thicker the glass, the higher the energy absorption and the lower the transmission. Green, grey and bronze-coloured glass is most frequently used. Due to their own inherent colouring, they can significantly change the way interior colours are perceived. Advances in glass coating technology have produced a much broader range of colours that are also considerably more neutral in terms of the effect they have on interior colours.

Modern insulated glass allows short wave solar radiation to pass through without hindrance, but the majority of short wave heat radiation is reflected. This results in solar heat gain in the cold seasons. ln summer, however, this solar radiation can result in overheating. In addition to other energy sources, the position and size of the glazing is critical. In general, windows or façades with large areas of glazing that face east, west and, especially, the south should be equipped with suitable sun protection glazing.

In addition to actual solar protection, which is constantly being refined, a great deal of research and development effort is invested in optimising storage life, processing and resistance to mechanical influences. Another essential requirement with regard to coating is to supply versions for all products that can be laminated, tempered and bent. Only through these parameters can the broad spectrum of modern architecture be addressed in every aspect. The trend today is toward design oriented façades, which entail new designs in solar control glass. Glass with low outside reflection can be manufactured, depending on the coating that is used. Glass façades can be built to neutralise the visible borders between inside and outside, yet remain energy efficient. On the other hand, there are mirroring or colour-reflecting coatings that allow for some architectural license, including realising unconventional design concepts. Such creative and additive glass designing is generally project-related and feasible once the physical construction rules have been taken into consideration. Digital or screen print techniques are available, along with laminated safety glass. Colour-coordinated balustrades, for example, enlarge the range of solar control glass.

The range of glass solutions available these days is large and can be manufactured depending upon the architectural requirements. Reducing the phases of artificial light also benefits and has a positive impact on the environment as a result.

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