Our Guide to Curved Structural Glass and How to Specify It
IQ can now offer curved structural glass installations with exceptional thermal performance for a range of bespoke glazing projects.
Our in-house developed thermally broken structural glazing systems, Invisio, can now be specified in a curved glass configuration. This means that curved glass facades, curved glass walls, and even curved sliding glass doors can be specified for your next project.
We often get asked; What is curved glass? How is it made? How do I specify it for my project? This article will guide you through curved glass options and what considerations are needed when specifying this glazing solution.
What is Curved Structural Glass?
Curved structural glass is just as it sounds, its structural glazing where the panes have been manufactured as curves.
All curved glass units are made in kiln baths where the radius of the curve required is cut on water jets into metal templates, forming the shape of the glass curvature. The flat glass is placed over the metal mould and the kiln is heated very quickly, going from 1-1000 degrees in 7 minutes. Glass then forms in the space of the curve.
Curved glass can be made in one of three distinct ways, creating three main types of curved glass, each suited for different applications:
- Annealed Glass Bends (non-impact resistant)
- Laminated Curved Glass (impact resistant)
- Toughened Curved Glass (impact resistant)
Specifying Curved Structural Glass
IQ’s curved structural glazing achieves unparalleled thermal performance values due to the polyamide thermal break within the aluminium fixings and connections.
As these details are then concealed within the building finishes this further enhances the thermal performance values. Combined with the argon gas cavity and low e coating our curved structural glass system is ideal for any project type.
This adds fluidity to designs that are normally dominated by straight lines and sharp angles, allowing innovative architectural design to easily be achieved.
When specifying curved structural glass, some important considerations include that thermal performance the glazing needs to achieve as well as the radius.
The industry standard has been that curved structural glazing must have a minimum radius of 880mm, but with Invisio, we are able to manufacture curved structural glass elements with radiuses as tight as 580mm.
IQ’s technical sales team are on hand to help discuss options for curved structural glazing and advise on the best specification for your project’s requirements.
Curved Structural Glass Walls
Incorporating structural glass walls into a luxury villa or high-end home design has many advantages. This includes helping to maximise natural light in the interior spaces providing both mental and physical benefits for the home occupants. Natural light can also help to highlight luxury interior designs.
Adding to this, glass walls provide panoramic views of the outdoors, giving the internal living space a strong connection to the outdoors and turning nature in a piece of art to be enjoyed from within the home.
In order to maximise the flow of light and ensure the views are completely uninterrupted, curved structural glass can be incorporated into the corners, removing and sharp corners with silicone joins.
Curved Sliding Glass Doors
Curved structural glazing can also be incorporated into our slim sliding door systems. This innovative architectural glazing solution has an elegant design and makes new forms possible, underlines the complex design of modern buildings and living spaces.
Architects are constantly looking to push the boundaries and our curved structural glass doors help to remove any barriers.
The curved structural glass panes are encased in thermally broken aluminium profiles and use a bespoke curved sliding door track to allow for large, curved sliding sashes that can form part of an entire glass wall.
Curved Bullet Resistant Structural Glass
Bullet resistant glazing is a complex solution that involves rigorous testing at certified, independent facilities.
Structural glazing is an extremely flexible glazing solution and combining curved structural glass with bullet resistant glass results in a completely bespoke, innovative glazing solution ideal for any luxury project.
Bullet resistant curved glass was utilised to create a six storey bullet resistant glass façade for a luxury townhouse in New York. The curved structural glass design allows for panoramic views out of the luxury New York townhouse, providing a wider visual angle to view the outdoors.