Safety glass is glass with additional safety features that make it less likely to break, or less likely to pose a threat when broken. Common designs include toughened glass (also known as tempered glass) and laminated glass. Toughened or tempered glass is a type of safety glass processed by controlled thermal or chemical treatments to increase its strength compared with normal glass. Tempering puts the outer surfaces into compression and the inner surfaces into tension. Tempered glass is used in applications where standard glass could pose a potential danger, because it is four to five times stronger than standard glass and does not shatter into large shards when broken. Manufactured through a process of extreme heating and rapid cooling, tempered glass is significantly harder than normal glass. The brittle nature of tempered glass causes it to shatter into small oval-shaped pebbles when broken. This eliminates the danger of sharp edges. Due to this property — along with its strength — tempered glass is often referred to as ‘safety glass.’
Laminated glass is a type of safety glass that holds together when shattered. In the event of breaking, it is held in place by an interlayer, typically of polyvinyl butyral (PVB) or ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), between its two or more layers of glass. Laminated glass takes the idea of safety glass to the next level. Where tempered glass in the event of breakage, breaks into dull pieces, you still have pieces of glass to deal with. The idea behind Laminated glass is, in the extreme event of breakage, those pieces of glass stay in place. Laminated glass also provides sound deadening qualities that can be useful in noisy situations. Bradford Glass provides and installs both tempered and laminated glass depending on the application required. Call Bradford Glass and we will assist in determining the correct type of glass for your specific situation.