Volume 36, Issue 1, January 2001

Round Two
      The Second Batch of the Latest Developments Unveiled at glasstec 2000     

If you were there, you know glasstec 2000 had a lot to offer! In the December USGlass we offered a sampling of just a few of the products on display during the show. Following, in alphabetical order, are other products displayed at glasstec.

DuPont Invests in the Future

Those who stopped by the DuPont stand at glasstec quickly learned of the company’s strategy—“Investing in the Future.” This investment includes a number of new innovations including plans to expand capacity and capability at its Uentrop manufacturing plant in Germany to produce 3.21-meters-wide PVB interlayers by January 2001 (see related story on page 24). While the company has been offering these jumbo-sized glass laminates to North American customers for the past ten years, this added capacity will now allow the company to offer the service to its European clients as well.

DuPont also announced that it will formally introduce a new range of robust interlayer products in the first quarter of 2001. The company says these products will meet the needs of automotive laminators by providing higher productivity and production of more complex windshield designs. The company says these will be particularly popular in hot and humid climates, proven by three years of testing in Florida.

The company also launched Butacite™ DR (Defect Resistant) polyvinyl butyral at glasstec. According to the company, the new high-performance interlayer uses surface modifier chemistry and wide channel patterns to enable automotive glass laminators to reduce defects and improve quality and yields during the fabrication of car windshields and sidelites. Dupont says that as a result of lamination trials and initial commercial use, automotive laminators have confirmed up to 96 percent improvement in production yields and a significant reduction in both rejection and re-autoclave rates.


Flabeg Asserts its Independence
The Flabeg Group, an independent entity since April 2000, took advantage of glasstec to let people know that due to a management buyout, the company acquired the majority of the worldwide activities in the technical glass division of the Pilkington Group.

In addition to its newfound independence, the company has been busy developing new products. At glasstec, the Flabeg premiered a coating system, which it says improves the efficiency of solar glass and enhances its transmission properties. Flabeg says it developed these extremely thin coatings in the nanometer range with its recently developed dip coating process. Finely dispersed nanoparticles in an aqueous solution are deposited on the glass by dip coating and subsequent thermal curing.

The company also featured EControl™, which it says is the first controllable architectural glass. The product’s light and energy transmission can be varied in five stages by applying a small voltage.

GKN Sinter Metals is Boss”
GKN Sinter Metals featured a variety of its metal components at glasstec, chief among them being its sintered metal mirror bosses. According to the company, these structural components provide for a safe and vibrations-free fastening and positioning of automotive mirror bosses. According to the company, characteristics of the product include use of high-strength material, corrosion-resistant properties, reliable dimensional accuracy and availability in many colors.

Glassrobots Welcomes New Addition to the Family

Finland’s Glassrobots took advantage of glasstec to introduce a new member to its Rainbowmaker TSF™ family. One of the new additions, the Rainbowmaker TSF 350/260 Combi, processes glass sizes of 3500- by 2600-mm. The second, Rainbowmaker TSF 350/350 Turbo, processes glass sizes of 2500- by 3500-mm and 3500- by

According to the company, the Combi is the basic version with one mold wagon and manually adjustable chiller. The Turbo is a throughput version with three mold wagons in the system, which is motorized and automatic. Additionally, the chiller unit is automatically adjustable according to the bending radius. Glassrobots adds that the 350/350 enables production of glass with smaller girth and standard height as well as bigger girth with lower height.

Glasstech Features Bending and Tempering Systems
If you’re in the market for a bending or tempering system, Glasstech of Perrysburg, Ohio, has a number of options from which to choose. According to the company, its advanced bending and tempering system offers designers and architects the freedom and creativity they desire when using curved architectural glass for building facades and other applications.

The system, which can bend glass from thicknesses of 4- to 19-mm, utilizes a Glasstech-designed computer and accompanying software to determine each desired curvature and record the data for future reference. The computer controls glass shape, furnace temperature and cycle times, which the company says allows for greater quality control and increased production.

Glasstech also introduced its advanced cylindrical bending and tempering system which doubles production capacity, according to the company. Glasstech developed the product to meet the industry’s need for a machine that could handle frequent tooling changes and short runs. The company introduced its first constant radius bender (CRB) in 1992, which could produce a part every 15 seconds. Glasstech says the new CRB2 nearly doubles productivity by producing a part that is 4-mm thick and 1-meter in length in just 7.5 seconds or less.

Grenzebach Focuses on Customer Service Innovations
While most companies took advantage of glasstec to unveil new machinery, Germany’s Grenzebach presented a different type of innovation—this one in the customer service arena. Presently, Grenzebach customers have to identify the spare parts in a catalog and send a written order to the company. This time-consuming process will soon be shortened, according to Grenzebach. Users will now be able to use a special password to log onto http://www.grenzebach.com. Customers may then choose the spare parts they wish to order and place them into an online shopping cart. The order will then be sent via e-mail to the spare parts service at Grenzebach Maschinebau GmbH, where it will be processed.

The company also offers a teleservice system, which allows Grenzebach technicians to log into equipment all over the world to correct the operating or system defects. Until now, teleservice was only able to look at the line’s computer programs. Now, a new visualization system allows technicians to see the actual situation at a particular plant.

“In our business, every minute counts, as a failure of valuable equipment can cause damage amounting to tens of thousands of marks per hour,” said Grenzebach president Bernd Minning. “Avoiding damage in advance and repair of defects has become an absolute priority for us.”

Helima Strikes Gold
Helima was on-hand at glasstec to feature a variety of products for the insulating glass industry. This included the Helima Gold aluminum profiles and connectors, a combination of gold-colored profile and matching colored spacer tubes. The company says Helima Gold is easy and quick to assemble thanks to its special joining and connecting elements and push-fit design. Helima says the anchors can be screwed or pop riveted, and the profiles are available in different colors such as gold, antique gold, lead, white and black.

HOAF Offers Speedy Kilns
A variety of kilns for the flat glass industry were on display by Holland’s HOAF Infrared Technology. The company featured its Speedburn™ IV kiln, which the company says provides very fast heating—850 degrees Celsius in less than 12 minutes. Other features include a heat-resistant stainless burner housing, access for the product car from four sides, spacers to increase kiln heights, adjustable peep sight, horizontally or vertically and improved overall heat distribution. Additionally, the company says the product is safe and reliable, requires low maintenance and offers the best price/performance ratio as compared to similar products.

HTBS ProE™ Offers Increased Flexibility
Companies looking for increased flexibility and yield in bending and tempering operations, will not want to have missed the new HTBS ProE introduced by Finland’s Tamglass Engineering Oy. According to the company, the machine follows the established HTBS™ concept, in which the bending and tempering takes place on an adjustable roller bed. No molds are needed and the bending radius can be adjusted quickly and freely. Tamglass says this new product extends production capabilities into new dimensions. The new bender design combined with a large heating oven allows production of curved, tempered glass sheets to a maximum dimension of 2400- by 1500-mm.

The HTBS ProE may be used for both architectural and automotive applications. According to the company, one of the past limitations of producing bent architectural glass has been the technical difficulty and financial expense. But with the HTBS any single radius bent safety glass size with a length of up to 2.4-meters and with a bent dimension up to 1.5-meters can be delivered. Typical glass thickness range from 3- to 6- mm with an extended thickness range up to

The HTBS wasn’t the only product featured at the show. While at glasstec, Tamglass announced a contract for the delivery of flat glass tempering line number 875. The special line of HTF ProE™ will be delivered to BGP Belgian Glass Processing n.v. in Belgium.

Innomess Offers Latest in Glass Inspection Technology
Those looking for the latest in glass inspection technology need look no further than Germany’s Innomess. The company featured a bevy of products, which are able to perform such tasks as identifying defect detection in glass ribbon to laboratory inspection of flat glass samples.

The company’s FLOATSCAN line of products—Catcher & Optics—offer a variety of features such as fully-automatic inspection of point defects and distortion, long-term data storage and easy installation during production. Additionally, the company says very little maintenance is required and the products offer a comfortable user interface.

The company’s SCREENSCAN line—Faultfinder and Final—offers automatic online inspection of finished screens, avoids expensive reclamations, shows trends and systematical defects and on average, produces 15 percent less rejects.
Intermac Meets Variety of Machinery Needs
Italy’s Intermac Group was another company that displayed a wide range of machinery. The company featured the Fox, a CNC working center for straight and shape cutting and surface processing of glass sheets.
Another machine featured was the Slant 1600, a CNC shape beveling machine. According to the company, this five-axis work center is for automatic cycle machining operations such as shaped and straight beveling and edging, boring and polishing.

Innovation is the Key for Interpane
“Innovation in glass” was the slogan that German glass producer Interpane lived by at this year’s glasstec show. The company presented two types of solar control glass, ipasol neutral 68/34 and ipasol natura 67/34. According to the company, these products are attractive options for those seeking energy-efficient properties in glass. The company says these products offer a selectivity value of 2 or 1.97, representing a high light permeability with a simultaneously low transmission of solar energy.

But, Interpane says its product lines extend beyond glass and into coatings technology, such as Interpane Solar and into edge connection systems such as Thermo-System ITS. The company says ITS represents a refined edge connection, which minimizes heat loss in the connection between the glass, spacer and frame.
ISCAN Makes Flat Glass Job Easier
Israel’s ISCAN Technologies featured the ISCAN Palletizer, which the company describes as a new way of unloading moving glass sheets directly off the float line. Prior to this product introduction, the company says flat glass manufacturers have settled for inflexible stacking systems that only handle stationary glass sheets. ISCAN says this product is the only palletizing solution that unloads moving glass sheets, thereby increasing throughput and reducing operating costs.
Manufacturers will also be happy to hear that due to the product’s automated controls, companies are able to reduce labor requirements. The ISCAN Palletizer also improves quality assurance by allowing manufacturers to check the size and quality of each sheet.