The most prized types of windows and doors—composed of custom, handcrafted, solid, hot-rolled steel—grace innumerable luxury residential, commercial, cultural, institutional, and historically prominent structures across the United States.
Modern architectural designs favor open spaces and natural light throughout large buildings. Now, even enclosed interior areas like offices, corridors, and stairwells are using interior glass to open up otherwise windowless spaces. This requires fire-protective glazing that offers not only life safety, but also visual and color clarity.
Exposed to the extreme pressure released by an explosive mass, elements of the window or curtain wall assembly work together to withstand the blast load and dissipate its energy. Laminated glass takes the brunt of the blast force, the framing connections and glass bites work together to keep the lites in their frames, the mullions and sashes adequately deflect to handle the assembly’s changing shape, and window hardware transfers load to perimeter framing.
When it comes to historic preservation projects, architects and installers can find themselves at a loss. Wood is the most traditional material, but also notoriously unstable. It has a tendency to warp and becomes vulnerable to rot, decay, and insects. Some replacement products are more durable, but far from historically accurate, such as aluminum-framed windows.
Insulating glass (IG) units—or IGUs—have come a long way in the past 70 years. Originally mass-produced in the early 1940s to decrease noise and increase passenger comfort in Pullman railroad cars, the technology has transcended that mobile application and become integral to a business much more stationary in nature—the building industry.
Bent glass is a trend that has worked its way from sculptures and interior décor to becoming a major component of buildings’ exteriors. A modern, aesthetically pleasing design element, this glazing literally throws a curve into a façade, making people look twice and admire its unique structure. However, building professionals working with bent insulating glass (IG) must understand the process is as much a science as it is an art.