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    Nickel Sulfide Inclusion – A World Inside Glass
    A nickel sulfide inclusion is a tiny impurity formed when the glass is first made from sand and other powders. The nickel sulfide inclusion looks like a perfectly round, golden golf call. It is special because it grows over time and can spontaneously break tempered glass, even if nobody is near. This video also shows an amazing world of form and color found in a very small area of clear glass when glass is viewed under a microscope.

    More about glass breakage:
    Diagnosing Glass Breakage
    Safety Glass: Is It Really Safe?
    Glass Evidence in Crimes and Accidents

    A Day in the Life of a Window Consultant
    Chicago Window Expert rides a window washing scaffold to view the side of a Chicago high rise to inspect for causes of window condensation. Take a scary ride with Mark Meshulam. Spectacular views of downtown Chicago and Millennium Park.

    Need a window consultant? Go here: Window Consultant for Architects, Engineers and Building Owners
    Like working from heights? Go here: Fixing Window Leaks in Tall Buildings

    A Visit with Sak – 2009
    The iconic “Sak” Sakhnovsky is featured in a visit to the world famous Construction Research Laboratory in Miami. Sak’s irreverent discourse on architecture, building performance testing and human folly will have you laughing out loud.
    Want to learn more about window laboratory testing? Go here:
    Test Your Mettle at Construction Research Lab
    Window Testing: Ultimate Quality Control
    Preconstruction Mockup Testing: A Guide for Construction Professionals

    Bill Baker, Tall Buildings and the Burj Khalifa
    A sneak preview of Chicago Window Expert’s interview of Bill Baker, arguably the most influential structural engineer of our time. His brilliant structural concepts brought tall buildings to new heights across the world and guess where he works? At Skidmore, Owings & Merrill right here in Chicago.
    Want to learn more about the amazing Bill Baker? Go here:
    Bill Baker of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP: Tall Buildings and the Burj Khalifa
    Like architecture? Try this: The Symbolic Value of Buildings

    Breaking Glass
    If you are fascinated with the explosive release of energy as glass breaks under impact, this video is for you. You will not be distracted by technical explanations or anything else as glass impactor in a testing lab beats the living crap out of annealed and laminated glass. For fans of mindless destruction.
    Continue your destructive tendencies here: Diagnosing Glass Breakage
    Or get safe here: Safety Glass: Is It Really Safe?

    Breaking Tempered Glass
    This quick video demonstrates the amazing speed that cracks propagate in tempered glass once it is broken. The phrase “in an instant” just doesn’t do it justice.
    Learn more about amazing tempered glass: Annealed, Heat Strengthened, Tempered and Insulated Glass

    Project Animation
    Back in the days Mark Meshulam, Chicago Window Expert was VP/Owner of Builders Architectural Products, Inc., he was directly involved with the construction of hundreds of prominent Chicago buildings. This quick animation shows them Photoshopped into a city landsape.
    To see more of Chicago Window Expert’s construction projects go here: Projects

    Chicago Ground Hog Day Blizzard – Envision the Wind
    Remember the Groundhog Day Blizzard? Chicago Window Expert was nuts enough to go out into it armed with a video camera and a weird point of view: When we watch the snow blow around, we are actually seeing the wind flowing around us and impacting our buildings in intricate ways.
    To see more of that crazy blizzard go here: Envision the Wind in a Blizzard
    If you are a weather fan, try this: Wind Loads and Windows for the Very Windy City

    Chicago Window Expert Goes Solar
    Mark Meshulam visits Intersolar in San Francisco and demonstrates a variety of strategies for collecting and using the sun’s wealth of energy. If you are a fan of alternative energy and want to see photovoltaic panels, really cool solar trackers, building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) and the equipment used to make these things, here it all is.
    Read more: Chicago Window Expert Goes Solar

    CWE Visits Solar Power Plant
    CWE visits the largest (at the time of the visit) photovoltaic array in the US that uses 2-axis trackers. The guide explains the elaborate controls needed for operating the 87 trackers and CWE goes on to explore the construction methods and the effect of bird guano on the panels.
    Read more: CWE Visits Solar Power Plant

    Dynamic Water Test at Construction Research Lab
    Ever wonder what kind of testing is performed on buildings in construction laboratories before they are actually built in the real world? This video focuses upon one of the most exciting of those tests, the dynamic water test. In this test a roaring airplane engine is used to throw massive amounts of water at the test specimen under high wind conditions while nervous witnesses stand behind the pulsating glass just a few feet from the spinning propellers.
    Read more:
    The Dynamic Water Test
    Window Testing: Ultimate Quality Control
    Preconstruction Mockup Testing: A Guide for Construction Professionals

    Field Museum Structural Test
    Another exciting test performed in building envelope testing laboratories is the structural overload test. The test shown in this video is an overload test on steroids. Instead of setting the test pressure at 1.5 times the design pressure, we just kept cranking the pressure until the entire thing blew up. The project this testing was performed for was the world famous Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, where Sue the Dinosaur is protected by these very strong windows.
    Read more: Field Museum Window Replacement

    Historic Window Renovation
    Back in 1988, Mark Meshulam worked with the Field Museum of Natural History to create a super-custom window replacement, using specially designed aluminum extrusions and beautiful “square wagon wheel” castings. The process involved the initial creation of an on-site visual mockup, an elaboate test protocol performed at the Construction Research Laboratory and then the actual production and installation of 440 permanent windows. You can see these windows if you visit the Field Museum today. Over 25 years later, the windows look fantastic!
    Read more:
    Historic Window Renovation
    Restoring Steel Windows

    How to Avoid Breaking Shower Doors & Enclosures
    If you are one of the millions of Americans who bathe near glass shower enclosures, you will want to know that there is a chance, however rare, that your shower door could spontaneously explode. You might find this inconvenient if you happen to be naked and wet only a few inches away when it happens. Here is the inside scoop on why this shocking phenomenon occurs and steps you can take to minimize the risk. Spoiler alert: We do not advocate using handy-wipes instead of showers, nor do we recommend wearing raincoats in the shower it they may defeat the purpose.
    Read more: Breaking Glass Shower Doors & Enclosures

    Leaks & Problems with Vinyl Windows
    The last time we checked, this is our most-viewed video. Our web analytics confirm similar results on our companion article Leaks and Problems with Vinyl Windows. It seems that there are lots of problems with vinyl windows out there. Get your intro to this gaggle of problems right here.

    Leaks and Mold in Walls
    When mold infests your building, your health and real estate investment are at risk. This video shows an unfortunate condominium that experienced a mold outbtreak along an exterior masonry wall. The mold is shown blooming behind kitchen cabinets, baseboards and cove moldings. With the drywall removed, wet insulation and concrete block can be seen. You do not want this to happen to you! Read more here: Leaks and Mold in Walls: the dirty little secret

    Leaks Through Split Face Block
    Mark Meshulam rigs a spray rack on a badly leaking building corner composed of split faced block and turns on the spigot. In very little time, water makes its way all the way to the interior side of the single-wythe masonry wall where it then soaks insulation and drywall. In these conditions, mold growth can not be far behind. The video points out the importance of permeability in masonry wall construction, as well as right and wrong ways to detail through-wall flashings. The amount of water that comes through this wall is nothing short of shocking. Read more: Leaks Through Split Face Block

    Roll-A-Cover Retractable Restaurant Enclosure Flat Wheels
    Rolling enclosures are an increasingly popular feature, especially in restaurants where patrons enjoy the flexibility of an outdoor or enclosed venue, changeable at a moment’s notice. Too bad this rolling enclosure has flat wheels that don’t spin. This rolling enclosure doesn’t roll at all. Too bad for the restaurant owner who paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for this failing product.On a related subject: Insurance Investigation for Claimants or Carriers

    Safely Remove Glass from a High Rise
    When glass breaks on a high rise, it is no laughing matter. The first concern is to stabilize the broken glass pieces so they don’t fall and endanger the public. Chicago Window Expert rides a swing stage scaffold up to the broken tempered glass on the 17th floor, stabilizes the glass with adhesive film and removes the broken glass without dropping any pieces onto the street. Not bad for management. More on glass breakage: Glass Breakage and Pre-Existing Damage

    Tempered Glass Break
    CWE uses slo-mo to see if the incredibly fast breakage of tempered glass can be captured on video. With the breakage slowed down to 240 frames per second, what would be your guess? Will you be able to see the cracks moving across the big glass lite? The answer may surprise you. More on broken glass: Broken Glass Evidence in Crimes and Accidents

    Testing Leaking Brick Walls
    Another leaking masonry wall. This wall miserably fails a spray rack test. Water indicator paper that turns purple when wet is used to graphically convey the large volume of water leaking through the wall. The architectural details of the masonry walls is viewed and commented upon. Neither the architect, nor the builder or mason did their job very well, and a dangerously leaking building is the result. Companion article: Testing Leaking Brick Walls

    Wind and Windows in the Windy City
    They call Chicago the Windy City. Despite that this nickname was originally used to describe our politicians, there is still a bit of truth in the breezy moniker. In this quick snippet, CWE goes up into a Lake Shore Drive high rise and demonstrates the power and sound of the winds on high. More: Wind Loads and Windows for the Very Windy City

    Window Air & Water Leak Testing
    Chicago Window Expert performs air and water testing on wood French doors in a large luxury residence in Winnetka, IL. What a house!
    More about window testing: Air Infiltration Testing for Windows and Curtainwalls
    Window Water Leak Testing

    Window Leaks in Tall Buildings
    CWE works with brave caulker Rich who rappels down the side of a 30 story high-rise using a bosun’s chair looking for a leak in a metal wall panel system. We use an innovative (and cheap) “hanging cam” to watch Rich while he worked.
    Read more: Fixing Window Leaks in Tall Buildings
    Aluminum Window Leaks
    Storm Damage to Windows and Glass

    Chicago Window Expert in the News

    ABC: Consumer Beware: Glass Shower Doors Can Shatter Suddenly
    CBS: 2 Investigators: Older Glass Windows Are Potentially Deadly
    CBS: 2 Investigators: Glass Shower Doors Can Shatter Without Warning
    CBS: How Safe is the Glass Used in Doors and Windows?
    CBS: Shattering Shower Doors
    Inside Edition: Exploding Glass?
    NBC: Consumers Report Tempered Glass Sinks Exploding Without Warning
    NBC Dateline: Shattered, the tragedy of Josh and Amber Hilberling

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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"


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