Aviation Glass Proves Unbreakable
Helmond, Netherlands-based Glass Deco International recently introduced a new glass that it claims, tongue-in-cheek, is most definitely not “a breakthrough” technology.
At the Business Jet Interiors World Expo in February, Frans van Hapert offered visitors a hammer and an opportunity to take a hearty swing at a sample of what the company has trademark registered as Aviation Glass. By the time the two-day show closed, the pane of glass was still intact–not a chip, not a crack, not a break. In fact, van Hapert had even placed samples on the floor and walked on them repeatedly, with the same result.
According to van Hapert, CEO of the new spin-off company Aviation Glass & Technology, the secret is in a flexible polymeric sheet sandwiched between two tempered and heat-released glass panes. The result is tempered and heat-released, clear or mirrored glass, just 0.7 mm thick, that is both flexible and shock-absorbing. The company has a patent pending on the technology and notes that it is already aviation-certified and weighs about 50 percent less than ordinary glass.
“It has the look, feel and durability of ‘real’ glass and will give aviation interiors an extra luxurious elegance through the use of color and the inclusion of fiber optics, LED technology and etching,” said van Hapert.
The technology is already arousing interest in the aviation industry and one potential client inquired whether it could be used to build a spiral staircase in his new executive Boeing 747-8, van Hapert added. “We could,” he affirmed, “but the certification process and cost was a non-starter.”
The company sees a broad application of the new glass, including shower screens, flooring, countertops, tabletops, decorative cabinet doors and cabin dividers.
Parent company Glass-Deco International has been in business for more than 40 years as a specialist in home, business and industrial glass decorative products.