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Partners Look to Make Auto Glass Lighter, Tougher

Post Time:May 26,2016Classify:Company NewsView:429

Today’s car windshields generally are made of two pieces of glazed laminate glass of similar thickness that are fused together, but the companies are developing a lighter version by using a thinner but chemically strengthened second ply.

 

China Glass Network

Corning’s Gorilla Glass, already used in Ford GT, key material in new auto glass.

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China Glass Network

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OTTAWA – A joint venture between two international specialized-materials companies is looking to develop lighter, more durable automotive window glass.

Saint-Gobain Sekurit, part of the France-based Saint-Gobain Group, and U.S.-based Corning plan to develop, manufacture and sell automotive glazing products that offer “significantly improved lightness, toughness and optical quality over traditional solutions,” according to a joint statement.

Windshields on today’s cars generally are made of two pieces of glazed laminate glass of similar thickness that are fused together, but the JV will produce a lighter version by changing the thickness of the second ply, Stephane Garcia, vice president-sales, marketing and projects for Saint-Gobain Sekurit, tells WardsAuto.

“The second ply…will be made of the same glass that’s used on smartphones today,” he says. “Physically, its size is a quarter of the thickness of standard glass. Because it’s less thick, it has less mass and is lighter.”

The average windshield weighs 12.3 lbs. (5.6 kg), but the JV’s version will be 30% lighter.

The glass is Corning’s ultra-thin, chemically strengthened Gorilla Glass which, in terms of stone impact, is more resistant to damage by a factor of two, according to Doug Harshbarger, division vice president and business director-auto glass solutions at Corning. It can be used for all laminated windows in an automobile, including windshields, sunroofs and front and rear windows, he says.

The added cost of Gorilla Glass will be similar to what automakers already pay other specialty suppliers for lightweight materials, Harshbarger says. The JV’s new technology will cost between $2 and $4 for every pound that can be saved in a car, he suggests.

“A type of economics that all automakers are familiar with is, ‘How much does it cost to reduce a pound of weight in a car?’ They all have programs that calculate this,” Harshbarger says. “For example, you may have heard that last year Ford went from a steel frame to an aluminum frame in their F-150 trucks. They paid extra money for the aluminum material in order to deliver a truck with a lighter weight.

“Gorilla Glass is the same sort of thing, and the cost is similar to other weight-reduction technologies.”

 

 

 

 

Source: wardsauto.comAuthor: shangyi