Have you ever stopped to think about how much glass we are surrounded with every day? Glass making has existed since at least 1500 B.C. when they began creating glass vessels. The glass industry has reinvented itself many times since then as new technologies and new needs have helped expand the market for glass.
In the early 1800s, window glass became heavily in demand. As the pharmaceutical industry began to take off in the mid 1800s, so did the need for glass bottles to hold the medicines. Glass tableware began to steadily increase in quantities around the same time. New methods of cutting, welding, sealing, and tempering, as well as better glass at lower costs, have led to even more uses of glass. Simply stated, our modern lives wouldn’t exist without the use of glass. Glass is now used to make pipelines, cookware, building blocks, and heat insulation.
Although most people imagine glass to be what windows are made of or the glass used in your eyeglasses, there are 9 different types of glass created by varying the ingredients used to create glass. If you stop and think about your day, you’re surrounded by glass almost 100% of the time.
If you are like most people, you wake up each morning and look at your smartphone, which uses specialty touch screen glass. Your lights are powered with glass light bulbs and your home uses energy efficient windows to help maintain your home’s temperature. After a shower in your glass enclosed shower and a check of traffic on your TV, which uses ultra thin, frameless glass, you’re ready for your morning juice from a glass cup or your coffee from your glass coffee pot.
Even on your daily commute in your car, you are surrounded by automotive display glass and automotive design glass, which is specially coated to provide UV protection and to be shatter resistant. The buildings that you pass likely use architectural glass, which create interest and has created an entire specialty glass market devoted to unique glass designs.
When the work day is over, you’re coming back home to an array of glass, from your TV to your stove to your glasses you wear while you read the paper. Glass is so much a part of our society, that even some of the most popular cliché’s revolve around glass!
At Wakefield Equipment, we work closely with glass manufacturers to help provide the tools they need to be productive and to continue to create new glass products. We love glass and the people who create our glass, glass world.