In today’s era of increasingly energy-efficient homes and buildings, glass has a crucial role to play. Imagine having glass which delivers the comfort and performance of triple glazing, but which is as thin and light as single glazing. Naturally, AGC was up for the challenge!
AGC had been exploring and researching vacuum-glazing innovations for years, but things really started to move after it joined forces with Panasonic to combine their plasma screen technology for consumer electronics with AGC’s glazing expertise. Using the Panasonic technology for producing insulating glass led AGC to design a production line with entirely tailor-made machines and integrate this equipment into a continuous production flow, thus meeting the requirements of the glass industry in terms of automation and reliability.
Thanks to three-way collaboration between Panasonic and the AGC teams at the Technovation Centre and Lodelinsart plant (the Belgian AGC plant that houses the new production line) this unique production line was designed and built in just six months. It is now fully operational.
The final result is a double glazing unit comprising two sheets of 3mm glass, including one coated with a super-insulating layer, separated by a super thin 0.1mm vacuum space. Small, nearly invisible cylindrical pillars are positioned throughout this vacuum space to prevent the two sheets from touching due to external pressure.
Dubbed Fineo, this AGC-exclusive vacuum glazing delivers the same energy performance as triple glazing without compromising on style. Compared to triple-glazing, a Fineo pane of the same size is 4 to 5 times thinner, and just one third of the weight. With its thin profile it can integrate seamlessly into renovation projects or new builds alike. Unlike other vacuum glazing technologies, Fineo has no visible evacuation port and features very slim edge seals, providing the most unobstructed view possible.