Wired Glass Among Key Changes to ANSI Safety Glazing Standard

After half a decade of work, the new ANSI safety glazing standard has made its way out of the committee’s hands.

The Accredited Standards Committee (ASC) Z97 announced today the release of the 2015 version of industry standard ANSI Z97.1, “Safety glazing materials used in buildings — safety performance specifications and methods of test.”

According to Guardian Industries’ Kevin Olah, chair of ASC Z97, the new version of the standard is a culmination of five years of committee work and brings forward clarification and changes to the testing and rating of safety glazing.

Eastman Chemical Company’s Julia Schimmelpenningh, secretary to ASC Z97, says one significant change to the standard is the complete elimination of wired glass testing and rating language.

“As a result of many years of discussion, incident and data review, the committee has resolved that wired glass should not be considered a safety glazing material by this standard,” she says. “The material is explicitly excluded from the standard in the scope, and the 12-inch drop height and Class C classification has been removed.”

Another significant change is the assignment of glass type breakage and the subsequent analysis of the materials after impact.

“This was added based on discussions during the last cycle that a mechanism was needed to understand the amount of glass that detached during and immediately after impact from laminated and organic coated glass,” says Schimmelpenningh. “The new type ratings will allow for much faster and clearer specification of glass type in projects. For instance if tempered glass is acceptable, a Type 2 glass can be specified, if glass shard containment after breakage is a concern, as in the new International Building Code balustrade requirements, it is now easy to specify Type 1.”

Smaller changes, but still significant improvements, she says, include a complete revamp of the indoor-only weathering requirements—an upgrade to the thermal durability assessment.  “Language has been provided on testing of composite laminates based on perceived need by our committee members to address this growing glass trend,” she says.

According to a release from the committee, it will take a year-long hiatus as the standard begins to be adopted and will resume review of the document for industry applicability, methodology and product inclusion in 2016.

Interested parties in joining the committee may apply at www.ansiz97.com, where the standard document is also available for purchase.

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