Aesthetics and quality in architectural projects are what designers demand. In this regard, the handling of coated glass from the coating deposition through the processing steps to the final product is a hot topic, with the objective to reduce defects while maintaining the highest quality of glass in a flawless and pristine state.
Coated Glass needs to be protected from the time it is produced and through all the processing steps. At Saint-Gobain, we have developed a unique innovation called EASYPRO®. The technology addresses the problem of excessive plastic packaging and waste, helps to protect coated glass from scratches and damage, and reduces visual defects by improving the processing quality of glass, all while ensuring worker safety during handling and offering environmental benefits.
TRADITIONAL METHODS – A BIG PILE OF PLASTIC WASTE
Architects are conditioned to place the occupant and the environment at the forefront. The inherent concerns are for aesthetics, comfort, wellbeing, and sustainability. Glass processing is not necessarily a topic one considers when designing for most projects, but it is time to pay attention and bring awareness to the factors that could make or break the design intention, especially when aiming for sustainable architecture.
Due to the high susceptibility to scratches and humidity, industry standards for packaging coated glass destined for tempering involves the use of large quantities of plastic film for the interim protection of each jumbo pile or even individual glass unit during transport via truck followed by storage.
Once the glass reaches the processing plant, the vast amount of plastic film is carefully removed and disposed of, creating bulk waste and posing a time crunch and safety risk to workers during the delicate process of unveiling the protective film of each unit or pack, not to mention the risk of creating undesired defects with additional handling.
In a world where plastic has become so controversial, and an economy where various regulations and bans on plastics are increasingly being implemented, where does the solution lie? Glass panes need to be protected from damage; even a minute defect or small scratch must be avoided, to ensure a high quality end product before and up to the intricate and highly sensitive tempering process.
A SAINT-GOBAIN ECO-INNOVATION
Saint-Gobain, leader in setting glass industry standards, has an innovative technology that addresses the disadvantages of plastic use by cutting tremendous waste for the better of the environment, and subsequently saving time for the worker. We call it EASYPRO®.
EASYPRO® is a unique temporary surface protection developed and offered exclusively by Saint-Gobain. Deposited on to-be-tempered coated glass, it delivers effective protection against mechanical damage as well as ageing, during transport and processing, from deposition of the coating until tempering. The quantity of plastic is reduced, less time is wasted in preparing glass for processing, and energy consumption is also brought down.
During tempering, EASYPRO® simply burns off without leaving any residue inside or outside the furnace.
PROTECTIVE INNOVATION – MINIMIZING WASTE AND SAVING ENERGY
EASYPRO® does much more than just protect coated glass. This revolutionary solution not only contributes to higher levels of industrial performances during glass processing, but also helps improve the quality of tempered product, along with providing environmental advantages.
- Avoiding coversheet on jumbo glass means EASYPRO® improves the yield in the factory and reduces waste generation and disposal, thus minimizing its effects on the environment.
- Protecting glass from scratches during transport and processing, EASYPRO® facilitates loading into trucks, and reduces the carbon footprint during transport.
- During processing, EASYPRO® reduces defects and therefore the need to remake and produce new glass
- During the tempering process, EASYPRO® offers energy saving benefits by allowing reduced temperature levels in the furnace.
In factories, coated glass protected with EASYPRO® achieves an extended shelf life of up to 1 year, offering on one side more flexibility to glass processors, and helping in the reduction of waste.
Today more than 1.5M square meters of protected Saint-Gobain solar control coatings have already been sold. It was observed that, on average, the heating time in the temper furnace is lowered by up to 20% with EASYPRO®, offering a better yield and consequent energy savings.
NO THREAT TO THE ENVIRONMENT OR THE WORKERS
EASYPRO® is a sustainable product, with a low carbon footprint, that is safe for the environment and the worker. Several non-toxicity measurements and tests have been performed on EASYPRO®. Before tempering, the product is fused to glass and there is no risk to touch; the product complies with REACH regulations and is free of hazardous substances.
During the tempering process, EASYPRO burns away. Different TÜV measurements demonstrate that there was no significant difference of the particle concentration or VOC concentration release in the air during tempering of EASYPRO compared with the concentration during the tempering of enameled glass. All legal exposure limits were kept, thus posing no health risks. After tempering, measurements support the assertion that no residue due to the EASYPRO® coating remain on the glass or in the tempering furnace under normal use conditions.
FOR EASE OF PROCESSING GLASS DESTINED FOR DEMANDING PROJECTS
In addition to these major processing improvements, EASYPRO® contributes considerably to the improvement of the quality of glass after tempering, and participates to the reduction of anisotropy.
EASYPRO® makes the heating of coated glass as easy as that of clear glass. At the end of the heating phase, the glass is thermally homogeneous and anisotropy is minimized. EASYPRO® on Saint-Gobain solar control coatings guarantees to deliver the most performant glass with optimal aesthetics for the most demanding projects, such as those that boast impressive Overlength large span glass.
EASYPRO® – A STANDARD FOR SAINT-GOBAIN’S SOLAR CONTROL COATINGS
First developed as a response to the needs of glass processors, for protection, storage and processing purposes, EASYPRO® has advantages to offer to everyone. Being not only an ally in achieving ambitious projects, with greater size and tempered product of higher optical quality, but also serving hand in hand to achieve common objectives in reducing the carbon foot print of our constructions while building sustainable projects for the future.
Today EASYPRO® protects the following to-be-tempered coatings and has been a part of some successful realizations around the world.