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Thermal breakage caused by the uneven heating of glass by solar irradiance is one of the most common causes of annealed glass breakage in buildings. The classic thermal breakage situation occurs when the edges of a glass plate are shielded by the window frame system or significant building protrusions, while the central portions of the glass are not. This uneven heating situation causes tensile stress to develop along the edges of the glass. This paper presents a theoretically based procedure that can be used to estimate the level of tensile stress induced in a glass plate exposed to this typical thermal loading situation. This procedure is based on the results of a finite element parametric study and engineering judgment. In addition, an edge strength failure prediction model for annealed glass is presented which allows a designer to determine if the level of risk associated with an estimated edge stress is acceptable or unacceptable.
glass, thermal stress, windows, design
Associate Professor, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
Principal, Lingnell Consulting Services, Rockwall, TX