All You Need To Know About Glass Facades
Glass facades are increasingly gaining popularity in modern architecture be it commercial or residential. Over past few decades, glass has undergone tremendous technological improvements with regards to its performance in thermal insulation, modulating solar heat and light transmission. Some of the innovations in the glass-making industry, including double-glazed, thermal insulating and solar control have made it an ideal material for green buildings, too.
MakaaniQ explores the key features of this transparent building material and more.
Advantages of glass structures
Glass is a building material used both outdoors and indoors. Apart from building facades glass is used in interior spaces like staircases, partitions, shower cubicles, floors, etc. More and more developers are beginning to incorporate glass in their designs of residential properties. The prime advantages of using glass include:
- Besides letting in ample light into the room and offering a view of outside world, glass surfaces make a room appear larger.
- Light in weight, glass reduces the load on the building foundation to a great extent.
- Glass can be easily manufactured and installed in lesser time compared to other conventional materials like cement or steel.
- Glass surfaces are easy to maintain and help in preserving aesthetic beauty of a structure for longer period.
- Developments in Nano coating technology have paved way for glass applications with self-cleaning and anti-reflective properties. Reflective glass controls solar radiations while low-emissivity glass acts as a thermal insulator.
- Treated glass gives way to more design possibilities and colour options.
- Properties like recyclability, durability, corrosion-resistance and acoustical comfort by reducing noise are additional advantages.
Some outstanding glass structures in India
ITC Green Center, Gurgaon
The building which was opened in 2005, received a LEED Platinum certification by Indian Green Building Council (IGBC). Insulated glasses have been generously installed which help in controlling the heat and maintains the temperature besides, allowing natural light.
Olympia Tech Park, Chennai
The structure is known to be one of the largest green buildings in the world. It has obtained Gold Rating under the LEED CS category by the US Green Building Council (USGBC). The building uses coated (low-emissivity) glass which makes it energy-efficient.
Bata India, Sector 17 Gurgaon
An iconic glass building comprising of glass floors twisted and stacked over each other. The stunning building also has a glass cube constructed right next to it, which appears to be falling.
Future of glass in India
The regulations and standards for façade and window glazing are in place in global markets which ultimately benefit end-users in terms of safety as well as energy performances. The solution for a more sustainable use of glass materials in Indian structures involves certain regulations concerning usage of safety glazing with tempered & laminated glasses. This is currently applied in just a few major cities in India. The Energy Conservation Building Code 2007 (ECBC) of India has prescriptive standards for glass usage which are mainly significant in commercial buildings. As per the code, a maximum limit of 60 per cent of glazed area is allowed, but the recommended optimum upper limit is 40 per cent.
Advancements in glass innovation have led to the emergence of its eco-friendly forms like laminated glass, tempered glass, coated glass, etc. which are available easily.