When it comes to creating a beautiful space, incorporating a glass wall into your design is undoubtedly one of the most visually-stunning ways to achieve a striking look, both from an internal and external perspective. Glass walls flood rooms with natural light, offer unparalleled views to the outdoors and can even improve overall health and wellbeing for the occupants.
However, there’s a common misconception that if a wall is made of glass, it won’t be as safe and secure as a standard brick and mortar wall, or other forms of traditional building material. Here at Cantifix, we’re here to disprove that theory: a glass wall is not only beautiful, but also offers a whole other range of practical benefits too - so much so, in fact, it’s been coined “the new brick” of building materials. Read on to find out why glass walls offer a safe, secure and beautiful option for your next building project...
How Safe And Secure Are Glass Walls?
No matter how beautiful a glazing design might look, safety should always be the number one priority, followed very closely by security: these are factors that should never be compromised by aesthetics. Yet, whilst the art of bonding panels of glass together using only silicone may create timeless and stunning installations, it also naturally leads onto the question of whether these glass walls really are safe and secure.
The answer is yes, because modern technology has evolved to such an extent that the glazing industry is now able to utilise innovative design techniques to ensure products offer a comprehensive range of security options. From lamination to heat treating, glass walls can be designed safely for all different types of application, from residential to commercial.
Particularly within the last few decades, toughened or tempered glass has increasingly been used in frameless glass features such as walls - but also staircases, doors, and load-bearing floors. From here, glass lamination has created another level of safety within glass construction, to open up a whole new world of glazing possibilities.
Different levels of security are available, from simple ‘peace of mind’ boosters such as lamination, through to fully-integrated comprehensive security measures including bomb-proofing, anti-bandit technology, fire-resistant, shatter-proof and bulletproof glass.
Glass technology means that glazing safety and security products can actually also incorporate various advanced performance benefits for glass walls, including enhanced protection against noise pollution, solar control, self-cleaning glass and anti-condensation properties, to name but a few.
It might also surprise you that a glass wall can be the most efficient way to harness all that sunlight streaming through in keeping your home warm. Insulated glass doesn’t just add an aesthetic element to a building, it’s also endlessly practical too, and can help to reduce heat loss and ensure that a space remains at a consistent temperature. A range of solutions exist to ensure your glass wall is energy efficient and feels as good as it looks, from films to coatings to triple glazing.
How Does Safety Glass Technology Work?
The role of safe and secure glazing is to protect the occupant from any harm that might occur due to damage to the glass from an accidental impact or fracture. It also offers protection from deliberate damage (such as break ins) and other accidents, such as fire. The two most common types of safety glazing (as mentioned above) are toughened glass and laminated glass.
To get technical: in the toughening process, the glass is heated to temperatures upwards of 600°C and then rapidly cooled to around 15°C. As the glass is cooled from the outside, the outside of the glass compresses, while the inner portion of the glass sheet goes into tension (it’s being pulled apart by the compression of the outer faces of the glass). The high compressive surface stresses give toughened safety glass its increased strength, which generally tends to be four or five times stronger than ordinary glass.
Meanwhile, in the laminating process, multiple sheets of glass are ‘sandwiched’ with a thin adhesive laminate between and bonded together using heat and pressure. For high-risk applications that require more comprehensive security, thicker laminates with more layers will provide additional resistance against penetration (such as bullets or explosions).
What Are the Benefits of a Glass Wall?
Primarily, a glass wall offers a spectacular focal point within a room. The very concept of a large glass wall creates a vision of luxury and elegance - particularly if it is a frameless glass wall, which can offer an even more expansive view. Frameless glass windows should blend into the very fabric of the building, becoming a seamless and harmonious part of your property.
If it’s a structural glass wall, then this also plays a role in the construction of the building. With minimal detailing, and free from obstructive framework, structural glass walls invite the natural world into your home, whilst still providing all the security, comfort and safety you need.
In addition to the aesthetic value, glass walls can also offer surprising health benefits too - something that we’ve been researching with Oxford University to understand better. Natural light is proven to make us feel better, by boosting our wellbeing, productivity and cognition, and reducing stress. It’s also an essential factor in ensuring our circadian rhythms are functioning efficiently, which helps us to fall asleep at night, wake up in the morning, and basically keep our internal body clock on track.
However, with so much of modern lives spent indoors, it can be challenging to get the sunlight and vitamin D that we need to stay healthy. In this way, a glass wall is a fantastic addition to a property in order to experience the benefits of daylight without having to leave the comfort of home - especially with so many of us now set to continue working from home , in some capacity, in the future.
Ecologically and economically beneficial, glass walls offer a visually stunning way to invite the outdoors in, and connect you with the natural world, in luxurious style. However, more vital than the aesthetics is ensuring that the glazing solution you choose is both safe and secure: two key factors that should be prioritised when deciding which glazing supplier is the right one for your project. Plus, given the multi-functionality of protective glass today, your supplier should be able to fulfil a wide variety of bespoke requirements, whilst meeting the strictest safety and security standards.
At Cantifix, we install only the highest-quality products - from fire-resistant glass walls to (quite literally) bombproof structural glass wall installations. These can be fully integrated into any scheme of design, with the peace of mind that you’ll never have to compromise on beauty, luxury or visual elegance as a result.
For more information, visit the website: https://www.cantifix.co.uk/products/glass-wall/