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What is Toughened Glass?

January 17, 2016

Toughened glass or tempered glass is treated to be far more resistant to breakage than simple annealed glass and is up to five times as strong as ordinary glass which means that it has to be hit much harder in order to break. Also when it does break it is into lots of small pieces which are much less dangerous instead of splintering into large shards as plate glass, thus providing a major safety advantage in all of its applications.

Toughened glass is made from annealed glass treated with a thermal tempering process. A sheet of annealed glass is heated to above its “annealing point” of 600°C. Its surfaces are then rapidly cooled while the inner portion of the glass remains hotter. The different cooling rates between the surface and the inside of the glass produces different physical properties, resulting in compressive stresses in the surface balanced by tensile stresses in the body of the glass.

These counteracting stresses give toughened glass its increased strength. Toughened glass is physically and thermally stronger than regular glass. Any cutting or grinding must be done prior to tempering. Cutting, grinding, and sharp impacts after tempering will cause the glass to fracture.

Toughened glass has extremely broad applications in products because of its safety and strength. As a result it is used in a number of demanding applications, including windows, glass shower doors, architectural glass, sliding glass doors, glass tables, glass balconies, glass office partitions, kitchen glass splashbacks, glass balustrades, walk on glass and many other applications.

4 Responses to What is Toughened Glass?

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    I wonder how tough is toughened glass? I mean, what kind of force can it withstand? If someone would hit it with a pickaxe, would it break immediately or would you need to hit it a few times so that it starts cracking?

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    I’m also interested to hear more about toughened glass, just like Dave. It would be great if you could write much more about this so we can all get a sense of how durable this type of glass is. Thanks.

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    Just looked at your photo gallery and I liked what I saw. You seem to know what you are doing and I would like to hire you for a more special project involving different kinds of glass. I’ve send you more details in an email. Looking forward to hearing back from you.

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    Loved the woman playing the flute from your photo gallery! Would really like to see more pictures of this kind of special designed glass and not just plain glass. Ever since I was a kid I wanted to live in a house filled with glass and I’m hoping I can turn this into reality soon.

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