April 17, 2007
Vol 2 | Num 16


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News to know

Southwall enters green partnership in China

Southwall Technologies, a thin film company out of Palo Alto, Calif., has joined the ranks of United States-based glass companies bringing energy-efficient glass and glazing products to China.

Southwall’s move is in keeping with the broader trend of U.S. companies going to China. Among other film companies entering the Chinese market is 3M of St. Paul, Minn. The company has been working in China since the 1980s, and it opened a research and development center there last year, said Colleen Harris, 3M program manager.

“We have been selling our sun control window film products in China since the mid 1990s,” Harris said. “These films—for residential and commercial—are energy saving films that block [ultraviolet] rays that come into a house.”

Southwall entered into a partnership with China-based companies Eco Green Building Research Center and GB Sunshine Glass Technology to bring several energy-efficient building products to China, according to an April 12 company release.

Officials from the companies signed the partnership agreement during the International Conference on Intelligent, Green and Energy Efficient Building & New Technologies and Products Expo, March 26-28 in Beijing, according to the release.

Products include the company’s Heat Mirror and XIR film products that improve energy efficiency in buildings, according to the release.

Southwall Executive Vice President Dennis Capovilla said in the release that the growing awareness of green building in China makes the country a prime market.

"There is no doubt that China will continue its rapid economic growth and play an increasingly important role in the global economy,” Capovilla said. “We view China's adoption of sustainable design concepts as a compelling growth opportunity for Southwall's core energy-saving products.”

In the April 3 issue of e-glass weekly, representatives of Pittsburgh-based PPG Industries said the green trend also extended into low-emissivity coatings, tinted glass, insulating units and other glazing-related energy savers.

“There is an intense focus on energy conservation and energy prices in China,” said William Klingensmith, director of international business development for PPG Performance Glazings. As a result, the Chinese government is “driving the need for insulating glass and low e-products across different regions in China, and it’s evolving pretty quickly. You’re seeing more and more better performing glass,” he said.

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