Types of glass
Glass exists in a variety of types depending on the various applications that the glass is used for. Basically, there are four main types of glasses and they include:
- Borosilicate Glass – this is made from silica, aluminium oxide and boric oxide. This type of glass is used mainly in the manufacture of ovenware and other heat resisting glass items. This is due to its excellent thermal and chemical characteristics, which make it not to break when subjected to rapid changes in temperature.
- Glass Fiber – this is made from numerous tiny fibers of glass and it has a wide number of applications. It used for making glass wools which is a high quality insulation material in the building industry. Within the medical fields, it’s extensively used in the manufacture of medical equipment. And in the textile industry, because of its durability, it’s used in making helmets, ropes, and car chassis amongst other items.
- Commercial Glass – This is the most common type of glass that is usually seen around. It is used to manufacture vessels such as drinking jars, bottles, flat glass etc. Due to the fact that it’s colourless hence it can transmit light, it is used in making window panes too. Its main component is basically sand heated to very high temperatures of about 17,000 C. Other components such as soda ash or magnesium oxide can be added to lower the melting point and add to its chemical composition.
- Lead Glass – Lead glass is manufactured using lead oxide in the place of calcium oxide. It has a high refractive index and can sparkle when exposed to soft light. Due to this property, its main use is in the manufacture of decorative objects.
There are also other special types of glass and these include glass ceramics, optical glass, technical glass, sealing glass and vitreous glass.