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FENBC Fall Webinar Series: Glass Breakage in Insulated Glazing Units in Spandrel Assemblies

November 12, 2020 - November 17, 2020

We are presenting at this year’s FENBC Fall Webinar Series. The Fenestration Association of BC (FENBC) is a nonprofit trade association representing the interests of businesses engaged in the fenestration industry in BC, and other interested parties. FENBC will be offering 12 webinars through the months of October, November and December. You will not want to miss these opportunities. Join us on November 12 and 17, 2020.
More information and registration here.

Session Overview: Glass Breakage in Insulated Glazing Units in Spandrel Assemblies

Recent years have seen an increase in the use of insulated glazing units in spandrel applications. There have been increased instances of glass breakage attributed to thermal stress for this type of design especially when the glass is treated with ceramic frit. These spandrel applications see higher thermal stresses than with traditional single glazed spandrels and that venting the spandrel cavity has been shown to do little to minimize this increase. Recent research supports the theory that the increased in thermal stress is leading to breakage of the inner light due to the lowered strength of heat strengthened ceramic opacified glass. Simulations with 3-D thermal and CFD were implemented to predict the temperature difference that cause the thermal stresses in spandrel assemblies. In response to this phenomenon considerations are being given to using fully tempered glass for the inner light when using a ceramic frit opacifier. The result of testing of structurally glazed IGUs with a shattered fully tempered inner light demonstrated the residual strength was sufficient to resist an initial application design wind loads. The performance testing of ceramic frit were compared to silicone opacifier shows that these coating do not reduce the strength of the glazing.

Learning Objectives

1. Learn the conditions that lead to increased glass breakage in spandrel assemblies with insulated glazing units and how to distinguish them from other glazing failures.
2. Explore the limitations of venting spandrel assemblies and how computer simulations can be used to predict the glass surface temperature differences that can lead to increased risk of breakage.
3. Review the potential limitation of using fully tempered glass in lieu of heat strengthened glass for the inner light of insulated glazing units in spandrel assemblies.
4. Contrast the performance of silicone opacifier as an alternate to ceramic frit in spandrel assemblies.

This session will be presented by St├ęphane Hoffman, P.Eng and George Torok, C.E.T., BSS. It takes place on Thursday, Nov 12, 2020 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM EST. Register here.

Session Overview: Analyzing Condensation Risk in Unique Glazing Designs

Unique building projects, from stadiums to museums to concert halls, often employ complex and customized glazing systems to fit with the architectural intent. However, this can sometimes come in conflict with the building function, especially when there are strict conditioning requirements within the building interiors for condensation resistance and interior surface temperatures. To better ensure these customized systems will perform as required, project specific condensation analysis is needed that appropriately takes into account the unique features of not only the glazing system, but also the surrounding area and conditions. This presentation will show how a condensation analysis can be performed using 3D thermal modelling, mechanical design information and annual climate data to better assess the risks of condensation through several case examples.

This session will be presented by Neil Norris, P.Eng, MASc, CPHD. It takes place on Tuesday, Nov 17, 2020 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM EST. Register here.


November 12, 2020
November 17, 2020
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