PGC International Offers
Technical Resources for Protective Glazing-Related Industries
By Sara Neiswanger
The Protective Glazing Council (PGC) International and its
members are working on several new resources for the many industry groups
involved in specifying protective glazing products for a diverse segment
of projects that run the gamut from government facilities to commercial
buildings. As a primary trade association for manufacturers of protective
window films, the organization has long recognized the importance of standards
and other voluntary resources in the area of safety and security.
The continued development of those standards and other helpful documents,
especially in the commercial sector, is one of the missions of PGC International.
As the use of protective window films increases over the next five years,
the development of these resources is in high demand from end users.
Quality Assurance Accreditation Program
The Quality Assurance Accreditation Program (QAAP) is the newest undertaking
of PGC International members and was prompted by the need for specific
knowledge and information that is required when handling and installing
protective glazing products, such as security and safety films, and how
they differ from other glazing options. The program that will result from
this effort is geared toward installers and specifiers, and will provide
technical-level training and education about protective glazing products
and what constitutes proper installation procedures and maintenance. As
a comprehensive document, the QAAP is designed to offer an immediate impact
to companies striving to increase the quality and value they provide to
building owners and developers.
Product Selection Guidelines
PGC International members often receive requests for a form or checklist
tool to assist architects and specifiers in selecting the best product
for their buildings. The new Product Selection Guidelines will act as
this needed starting point. The guidelines will be fundamental, user-friendly
references that, given a certain threat level and performance level, will
serve as a guide to the appropriate product choices that will help shield
a building from various threats while mitigating their effects.
As an organization, PGC International represents six different areas within
the protective glazing scope: ballistics, blast, fire, forced-entry, hurricane,
and seismic; a product selection guideline is being developed for each.
Once available, the documents can be downloaded at www.protectiveglazing.org.
Each guideline will address the key questions an architect or specifier
should consider when evaluating the performance requirements of a product.
These include: various threat levels as outlined in the applicable code;
available levels of protection; and design parameters associated with
required performance levels. For instance, if an architect needs a certain
window film that meets GSA-approved blast-performance conditions, along
with a few additional pieces of information, using the selection guidelines
the installer could easily determine which products would meet the needed
Each guideline will be accompanied by a product selection data sheet.
This form is being created to provide a clear and simple way for specifiers
to communicate what performance data is important to their projects and
to have a clear and simplified way for the manufacturer or contractor
to respond with appropriate test data. The intent is to aid in product
selection based on the performance that best suites the application. We
expect the product selection guidelines will fill a basic void of clarity
in the information exchange process, while providing an effective tool
to enhance apples-to-apples communication between specifier and contractor.
Protective Glazing Manual
Finally, PGC International is also collaborating with the Glass Association
of North America to create a Protective Glazing Manual. It will be the
first of its kind that focuses solely on the use of protective glazing
products, systems and technologies. This manual is intended to be a “101”-level
educational manual focusing on types and purposes of protective glazing
products, and will also include related best practice information such
as maintenance and storage. Introductory chapters on safety film, flat
glass, polycarbonate and building codes, among others, are included. In
addition, sections devoted to the six types of protective glazing, as
well as information on emergency egress and material handling practices,
are also detailed in the manual. This resource will provide a thorough
overview of all things related to protective glazing, and will be available
for sale in mid-2010.
PGC International continues to address the growing need for protective
glazing systems in both government and commercial settings through education
and tool development. Its members come from various segments of the industry
including window film manufacturers, laminated glass fabricators, suppliers,
contractors, consultants and test laboratories. A complete listing of
members, as well as additional information about the organization, is
available online at www.protectiveglazing.org.
Sara Neiswanger is the account executive for PGC
International based in Topeka, Kan.
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