Volume 39,  Issue 11,  November 2004

News Now

IGCC and IGMA Hold First Joint Certification Committee Meeting

The Insulating Glass Certification Council (IGCC) and the Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance (IGMA) held their first harmonized certification meeting October 27-28 in Toronto. Since IGMA has licensed its certification program to IGCC, the two groups are now taking steps toward harmonization.

“IGCC and IGMA should not be going in separate directions,” said IGCC administrator John Kent during the first day’s meeting. “We want to bring the groups closer together.”

One of the items on the meeting’s agenda was the establishment of an IGCC/IGMA certification appeals committee to address the interpretation of respective certification programs. The group agreed that the committee should consist of the IGCC and IGMA presidents, the chairperson of the IGCC certification committee, two public interest representatives (one U.S. and one Canadian) and two laboratory representatives (one U.S. and one Canadian). Committee members include Mike Grossman, ACI Distribution, IGCC president; Oak Moser, Cardinal IG, IGMA president; Don Vild, public interest, certification committee chairperson; Jim Spetz, U.S. public interest representative; Dan Braun, Architectural Testing Inc., U.S. laboratory representative; and David Bailey, Bodycote Material Testing, Canadian laboratory representative. The Canadian public interest slot was not filled during the meeting.

The certification committee also established and prioritized a list of topics upon which it will focus. Top priority was harmonizing the variations in the IGCC and IGMA programs, which was accomplished during the meeting.

The group also discussed auditor training; manufacturer training for quality assurance systems and quality assurance forms; harmonization of the IGCC and IGMA certified products key; gas filling quality assurance requirements and quality assurance forms; as well as the auditor requirements for witnessing the fabrication of gas filling test units.

The meeting also included a discussion on how integrated insulating glass units (i.e. Sashlite-type products) should be tested. An interim certification program was established to certify such products. A task group was also formed to address outstanding technical issues that need to be resolved in order to implement a permanent program.

The National Fenestration Rating Council’s (NFRC) move toward certifying non-residential products was also discussed. Under NFRC’s proposed non-residential program, insulating glass (IG) manufacturers will be required to certify the IG system (to include the center of glass performance and the spacer performance). Some members of the IG industry are concerned that the NFRC’s new program will make certification more complex; there is also concern because the NFRC passed a technical procedure without “good representation” of the industry. The group discussed the importance of industry involvement on the matter. (Editor’s note: At press time the NFRC’s non-residential task group was scheduled to next meet November 22 in Baltimore; many IGCC and IGMA members planned to attend in order to provide expanded industry representation.) 
At the next meeting of the certification committee, which will take place in May in Philadelphia, Joe Erb of Edgetech IG will replace Don Vild as the certification committee chairperson. 

Vesuvius Announces Plans to Increase Prices
The Vesuvius Group has announced plans to increase prices in January 2005 by at least 5 percent.

“[For] months now, we have been facing continuous price increases in raw materials,” said Giancarlo Cozzani, Vesuvius chief executive officer. “As an example, the cost for refractory bauxite has doubled in the past few months, and that for graphite by more than 50 percent. The beginning of 2004 has seen the set up of a Chinese magnesia cartel, and, as a result, the cost of magnesia has risen nearly 100 percent. More recently raw materials of Western origin, such as alumina and zirconia products, have increased by double-digit percentages. In addition, we have been facing price moves in oil, energy and transportation. We can no longer bear these increases without passing [on] to our customers the part we cannot compensate with improved manufacturing efficiencies.” 

According to the company’s announcement, the steel industry, Vesuvius’ primary business, will be the main sector affected. However, its cement and lime, ceramic, foundry, aluminum and glass industries will be impacted as well.


USG

© Copyright Key Communications Inc. All rights reserved. No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.