Volume 50, Issue 6 - June 2015


Guardian Puts its Products to Work at New Science and Technology Center

Guardian’s recently completed Science & Technology Center was designed as a working demonstration of the company’s commitment to advancing glass technology.

Located in Carleton, Mich., a new 27,000-square-foot addition to Guardian Industries’ Science and Technology Center (STC) is now completed. The project was built with the goal of helping accelerate the company’s rate of product design and development.

Highlights of the expansion include a full-size vacuum coater, a glass product showcase wall, an electrically wired, full-scale demonstration wall for advanced glazing technologies and an upgraded and expanded laboratory space.
The structure also features a curtainwall designed to achieve net zero energy results using the company’s high-performance commercial glass products, SunGuard SNX 51/23 and SunGuard Spandrel HT, and building-integrated photovoltaic panels.

“This high-performance building is a working demonstration of Guardian’s commitment to advancing glass technology,” says Sheldon Davis, vice president of research and development. “We have built the exterior walls using our next-generation low-E glass—SunGuard SNX 51/23—along with electricity-generating photovoltaic glass. There are very few buildings today with this kind of facade technology.”

Bagatelos Architectural Glass Systems designed and installed the façade system.

“All of the possibilities that are available today to tune a wall are available for integration onto the STC building,” says Nick Bagatelos, president. “The walls can be used to gather information on current products that are available, or new product concepts.”

Fabricated by Thompson I.G., the building features a thermally broken curtainwall, energy-dense vertical wall PV, rooftop PV and high-performance glass to tune the performance per elevation. Guardian SunGuard SNX 51/23 contributes 51 percent visible light transmission and a solar heat gain coefficient of 0.23 to that performance. The glossy black spandrel on the south façade is one of the first applications for the new Guardian SunGuard Spandrel HT. PV modules are also installed in the spandrel area to increase the building’s energy efficiency.

Eastman to Shutter Southwall

Come September, Southwall Insulating Glass of Chicago, an Eastman Chemical Co. subsidiary, will no longer be in the insulating glass (IG) business.

That site mainly manufactures one product—Heat Mirror Insulating Glass, which the company says “provides performance beyond triple-pane IG at the same weight as dual-pane IG.”

According to a statement from Eastman, the decision is being driven by low rates of adoption for higher-performance IG in the U.S. market. Southwall Insulating Glass heavily invested in manufacturing automation at the Chicago facility in hopes that anticipated revisions to Energy Star performance criteria for windows would increase demand for those products.

“Although the company successfully developed that world-class automation, unfortunately those revisions did not turn out as expected,” Eastman said in a statement. “Consequently, the decision has been made to exit the IG business.”
Eastman will continue to manufacture Heat Mirror film at a plant in Dresden, Germany, and it will “also continue to explore strategic options that leverage Heat Mirror technology and manufacturing automation to accelerate growth of the global Heat Mirror film business,“ according to a statement.

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