e-glass weekly - July 1, 2008 | Vol 3, Num 26
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Saflex opens photovoltaic business
As the solar market grows rapidly in the U.S. and across the world, solar divisions sprout up like mushrooms within glass and glazing companies. ...
As the solar market grows rapidly in the U.S. and across the world, solar divisions sprout up like mushrooms within glass and glazing companies. Click here to read about Salem’s new solar business and here for Arch’s new solar division. Solutia Inc., St. Louis, Mo., was the latest to announce its Saflex Photovoltaic business, June 25. The division serves the rapidly growing thin-film solar panels market.
“Currently the business sells a special grade of PVB interlayer known as Saflex PA 61 to the photovoltaic market,” says Rich Daniels, vice president of Innovation and Growth, Saflex, a unit of Solutia Inc. “This product is sealed between coated glass, where it protects the electronic components that are contained inside.” In the future, the product offering might expand to include a next-generation Saflex interlayer, or other materials that could be of value to the solar industry and lower the cost per watt, he says. “Importantly, we provide industry-leading technical support to help ensure our customers gain the highest possible value from their use of Saflex and to collaborate on new opportunities.”
The photovoltaic division is building rapidly, Daniels says. “Presently, we have several employees dedicated specifically to the photovoltaic business that serve in functions such as market and application development, sales, technical service, and technology in Europe, Asia and North America. In other disciplines--such as manufacturing and staff functions--our photovoltaic business shares resources with the rest of Saflex or Solutia.”
The North American photovoltaic market has more than tripled from 2003 through 2007, says Jay Pyper, global market development director, solar business, Saflex. “Public policy is the greatest driver of photovoltaic technology,” he says. “Last year, two countries with aggressive solar energy policies--Germany and Spain--accounted for nearly 70 percent of the world photovoltaic market, with Japan, the United States, and other countries comprising much smaller shares.” The U.S. accounted for approximately 8 percent of the world photovoltaic market in 2007, he says. “However, the potential future market for North America is very large and we expect strong growth in this region, driven by lower cost per watt, more favorable policy initiatives and increased peak energy costs.”
The market for thin-film solar panels is expected to grow at 40 percent per year, Daniels says. “With Saflex’s proven technology, high scalability, and technical expertise, we expect to rapidly grow our presence in this market.”
Two key factors position Saflex to be the leading encapsulant supplier to the thin-film solar panel market, said Luc De Temmerman, senior vice president of Solutia Inc. and president of Saflex, in a company release. “The first is technology: our advanced third-generation chemistry and material science is effective and stable for use with coated glass and is proven to be durable in applications where the edges of the laminate are exposed to the elements. The second is capacity: no other interlayer provider is investing in new PVB capacity at the rate of Saflex.” These investments span sites in Belgium, China, Mexico and the United States.
“In seven to 10 years, photovoltaic will become roughly as large as our two traditional markets for Saflex: architectural and automotive,” Daniels says.
—By Sahely Mukerji, e-glass weekly editor
More top stories
PFG Glass Installs first fully-automated Super Spacer TriSeal line in Canada
Officials at Edgetech I.G., Cambridge, Ohio, announced that PFG Glass of Langley, British Columbia, recently installed the first fully-automated Super Spacer TriSeal line in Canada, according to a June 25 Edgetech release. Edgetech’s technical sales team recommended the state-of-the-art Lisec line that is capable of producing up to 1,500 commercial insulating glass units per day when running two shifts. ... read more
Researchers develop window capable of generating electricity
Korean researchers and Samsung SDI said Tuesday that they have developed a window that can be used to generate electric power. The building integrated photovoltalic (BIPV) cells made by coating windows with Sol-Gel material have reached power efficiency of 11 percent in laboratory tests, said Bae Byeong-Soo, a professor at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), according to a June 24 Telecoms Korea article ... read more
Guardian Industries case study demonstrates importance of specifying the right glass
Guardian Industries, Auburn Hills, Mich., has published a case study on high-performance coated glass that demonstrates all low-Es are not created equal. The study, “Just What the Doctor Ordered: New Low-E glass Reduces Heat, Increases Comfort of Occupants and Patients,” is available here.
New prospects at UK glass firm
Twenty jobs have been created at a £37 million new glass-coating plant in St. Helens, England. A new high technology coating plant is to be installed at Pilkington’s Greengate Works which will produce specialty glass for a number of eco-friendly applications, according to a June 25 LiverpoolEcho.co.uk article. ... read more
FPL to build 110 megawatts of solar power in Florida
FPL Group Inc., the largest operator of solar electricity in the United States, plans to build 110 megawatts of generation powered by the sun as part of a plan to add more renewable energy in Florida, according to a June 25 Bloomberg.com report. The proposal is part of FPL's September 2007 commitment to build 300 megawatts of solar power in Florida and 500 nationwide over seven years. ... read more
Welcome to the days of air-travel pains
The fuel-guzzling airline industry is hurting bad from sky high oil costs, and passengers are sharing the pain. ...
Monday, June 30, 2008
—By Katy Devlin, commercial glass & metals editor
During a 10-day stretch this month, I took seven flights, maneuvered throughout five airports, dealt with one lost bag*, faced one cancelled flight and spent one night in the Atlanta airport (I recommend Terminal C. The lack of the armrests on the seat rows makes for a surprisingly comfortable make-shift bed). I also traveled on completely full flights and paid noticeably more for my tickets.
During my ample hours of airport meditation time, I contemplated the cause of my uncharacteristic travel woes. I shifted away from the ever-so-tempting urge to blame my annoying waits and detours on the airlines. Rather, I placed blame much more accurately on rising fuel prices (plus a little bit of unpredictable summer weather and a pinch of bad luck). ... read more
Pat Mooney Inc., Addison, Ill., introduced PMI upcut saws that cut aluminum extrusions and provide a burr-free finish, according to a company release. ...
Pat Mooney Inc., Addison, Ill., introduced PMI upcut saws that cut aluminum extrusions and provide a burr-free finish, according to a company release. Housed under the worktable, the saws travel up through the work piece. They have 5-horsepower to 7.5-horsepower motors, and include pneumatically controlled blade feed and pneumatic clamping systems with adjustable clamping pressure to prevent distortion of thin wall profiles. PMI saw worktables are coated with chromate to prevent marring on the exterior of the work piece. Safety features include a safety machine enclosure that protects the worktable, two-hand cycle start activation and a safety limit switch.
800/323-7503 | www.patmooneysaws.com
Defining disability insurance
There are two types of disability insurance policies: short-term and long-term. ...
There are two types of disability insurance policies: short-term and long-term:
- Short-term disability policies have a waiting period of 0-14 days before coverage kicks in, with a maximum benefit period of two years.
- Long-term disability policies have a waiting period of several weeks to several months with a maximum benefit period ranging from a few years to life.
Under an employer-sponsored disability plan, you can select the waiting period that best fits the needs of your company.
It is important to understand the definition of “disability” in your plan, as well as terms such as “own occupation,” “any occupation,” and “material duties.” These are especially important when you have an employee with a partial disability who can perform some work but not the specific job he or she was performing before the disability.
NGA’s GlassInsure program offers several options on disability plans, including a first-time buyer’s discount. For more information, contact the program administrator at 800/640-7601 or email@example.com.
UPG opens third plant
With the completion of its 55,000-square-foot building in Lincolnton, N.C., June 19, United Plate Glass Co., Butler, Pa., adds to its fabrication capabilities with a third tempering furnace, a cutting table, a flat polisher, a top drill shower door fabrication line, an insulating line with gas press and dual polyurethane and silicone secondary sealing. ...
With the completion of its 55,000-square-foot building in Lincolnton, N.C., June 19, United Plate Glass Co., Butler, Pa., adds to its fabrication capabilities with a third tempering furnace, a cutting table, a flat polisher, a top drill shower door fabrication line, an insulating line with gas press and dual polyurethane and silicone secondary sealing. The new plant “will do anything from residential windows to frameless heavy showers to commercial applications,” says Matt Anderson, Lincolnton plant manager.
"The Charlotte area is booming and we are excited to be part of the growth," says Mike Cully, vice president, UPG. "Service, quality and reliability has always been in the hearts of United Plate Glass employees, and we know this will be no different for our new location. Customers will come to expect the same great service from our North Carolina facility as they have from our Pennsylvania plants. With addition of our new facility in North Carolina, we are eager to fill a niche for the glass industry in the area."
UPG, a flat glass fabricator and distributor, serves parts of Maryland, South Western New York, Northeast and Southern Ohio, Western and parts of Central Pennsylvania, Northern West Virginia, as well as North Carolina, parts of South Carolina, western Tennessee and parts of Virginia.
“We saw a great potential in the ever increasing Charlotte area,” says Joyce Cully, controller, UPG. “We grow at a slow and steady pace. We are looking to service the Charlotte metro area, and eventually stretch our legs into South Carolina, Georgia, Virginia and West Virginia.”
UPG fabricates in-house at its two locations that include three fabricating and distribution facilities and state-of-the-art machines from companies such as Uniglass, Finland; Billco Manufacturing Inc., Zelienople, Pa.; Bovone, Italy; and Lisec, Germany. “Doing this enables us to complete your order with fast turnaround times to meet demanding supply deadlines without compromising quality,” Anderson says.
The most advanced technology available does not make a leader in any industry, Mike Cully says. “There is a difference between producing a quality product and simply turning out large quantity of product. UPG has deliberately grown at a steady and controlled pace in efforts to maintain our focus on quality.”
—By Sahely Mukerji, e-glass weekly editor
More financial news
DuPont Glass announces price increase of interlayers
Officials at DuPont Glass Laminating Solutions, Wilmington, Del., announced a price increase of up to 30 percent on all grades of DuPont Butacite polyvinyl butyral interlayer product line effective Aug. 1, according to a June 27 company release. The price increase will be applied globally, while specifics will vary by region. ... read more
Nippon Sheet declines on EU fines for price-fixing
Nippon Sheet Glass Co., the world's largest maker of car windows, fell the most in a month in Tokyo trading as European regulators may fine the company and its rivals for price-fixing as early as next month, according to a June 24 Bloomberg.com report. ... read more
Apogee 1Q profit falls on expenses, reaffirms fiscal-year guidance
Glass maker Apogee Enterprises Inc. on Tuesday said fiscal first-quarter net income fell 13 percent, below analyst expectations, as higher expenses outpaced higher revenue, according to a June 25 Associated Press article. ... read more
Flat Glass Industries announces acquisition of minority interests
Flat Glass Industries announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire the entire minority interests in its 50 percent owned subsidiary, Burnbridge Glass and to acquire the remaining 50 percent interests not already owned by the company in the land and buildings occupied by Burnbridge Glass at 1A Pennant St. Cardiff, N.S.W., according to a June 26 Yahoo.com article. ... read more