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  • An Interview with PPG

    By Mark Meshulam

    Mark Meshulam is an expert witness and consultant for windows, glazing and building exteriors.

    Rob Struble is Manager, Business Communications, PPG Performance Glazings

    Rob Struble is Manager, Business Communications,  PPG Performance Glazings

    Rob Struble is Manager, Business Communications, PPG Performance Glazings

    Q: What can you tell us that will help put the array of Low-E glass choices into an understandable framework?

    PPG: Our Low-E products fall into two categories, Sungate glass and Solarban glass.

    Bannockburn, IL office building with PPG Sungate 500 glass

    Bannockburn, IL office building with PPG Sungate 500 glass


    Sungate is a pyrolytic coating designed for passive solar applications. It allows more solar heat gain into the building, especially when used on the #3 surface, which is helpful in Northern residences.

    Solarban is a “sputter coated” solar control product. It reduces long-wave and short-wave infrared (heat) energy, which works well in Northern commercial applications and all Southern situations where high cooling loads are an issue.

    Sungate and Solarban coatings can be applied to the #2 or #3 surfaces of an insulated glass unit, and can be paired with any color glass on the exterior, usually with clear on the interior. These coatings can be applied to blue, green, gray, bronze, ultra-clear and aqua-blue as well as clear glass.

    A wide range of aesthetic and performance options exist within these two coating families. There are three Sungate glass coatings, and combined with tinted glasses, produces over 50 possible product combinations. There are four different Solarban glass coatings which, in combination with tinted glasses, produce well over 100 possible product performance and aesthetic combinations.

    840 Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, uses PPG Solarban 60 glass

    840 Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, uses PPG Solarban 60 glass



    Q: Is PPG involved in the PV (photovoltaic) market?

    PPG: Yes, we have some products in R&D now. In addition, we supply glass to the PV panel industry. Typically this glass is our Solarphire PV glass, and it can be supplied with an antireflective coating and a transparent conductive oxide (for thin-film pv applications).

    Q: Is PPG involved in self-heating glass, glass that warms itself with the application of electricity?

    PPG: I’m not familiar with that term, but PPG has a line of electrically conductive products, called INTELIGLAZE glass, which are used for special applications with would include heating. PPG also manufacturers “heat absorbing” glass – many of our tinted glasses fall into this category.

    Q: Is PPG involved in “vacuum glass”, glass with R-values close to that of an insulated wall, by using a vacuum in the airspace?

    PPG: No, PPG does not manufacturer vacuum glass. PPG is a primary
    glass manufacturer and supplies glass to a range of glass fabricators
    who produce insulating units and other finished products.

    Q: What percentage of your Low-E glass is sold to other glass fabricators, and what percent is fabbed into insulated units and sold to users/installers?

    PPG: Similar to above, PPG sells clear, tinted and coated flat glass to a variety of glass fabricators, who in turn make insulating units and other fabricated products.

    Mark Meshulam, Chicago Window Expert can help you with Low-E glass selection

    Mark Meshulam, Chicago Window Expert can help you with Low-E glass selection

    Check out PPG’s Glass Configurator

    Need info about Low-E glass?

    No matter where you are,
    contact me, Mark Meshulam,
    the Chicago Window Expert
    For the expert attention you deserve

    Mark@ChicagoWindowExpert.com
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Photo of the day

Butterfly pattern in tempered glass
At the center of the glass fracture pattern, two polygons can be found bordering one another. These polygons are typical of the breakage pattern caused by a nickel sulfide inclusion. The inclusion, a tiny dot, can be seen on the break between the two polygons. This pattern is also called a "butterfly pattern"