As one GLASSOLUTIONS two specialist toughening plants, the Dudley factory serves domestic sealed unit customers across England and Wales with the full range of toughened Planitherm low-e and float glass products.
Following this latest investment programme to increase production efficiency and enhance product quality, the plant is ideally placed to serve the growing demand for toughened products with an additional 50% capacity.
The plant investment programme is the largest in the factory’s 18 years under GLASSOLUTIONS’ ownership, and focused on three key areas. Firstly, a new automated Hegla glass loader ensures the plant’s cutting tables are fed more quickly and reliably with the 20m2 float glass sheets which are delivered daily. Once cut to size, a new LISEC vertical compact grinding machine ensures the glass is precision arrissed, after which the glass is fed into a new Firejet furnace. These largely automated processes reduce the need for manual handling to provide a safer working environment for GLASSOLUTIONS personnel and higher consistency of product.
The new furnace toughens glass sheets in a super-efficient way, taking just a few minutes to transform the glass into a permanently toughened product. In addition to being environmentally superior to the machine it replaced, thanks to 30% less energy usage, the new furnace enables GLASSOLUTIONS to maintain higher quality levels with a lower risk of glass imperfections and fewer re-makes.
Adam Taylor, Head of Marketing at GLASSOLUTIONS says: “Our investment is a sign of our confidence in the strength of the UK toughened glass market, and it’s fantastic to have the new plant up and running only a few months after the green light was given. The plant is now superbly equipped and this has enabled us to set ourselves ambitious quality and delivery reliability targets to ensure we continue to lead the domestic toughened glass market.”
GLASSOLUTIONS is the UK’s largest processor and toughener of the Planitherm series of glass products which are extensively used in the manufacture of domestic sealed units, and key to achieving the highest Window Energy Ratings (WERs). In addition to its Dudley plant, GLASSOLUTIONS produces toughened glass products for the domestic market at Portsmouth, and manufactures sealed units at plants in Motherwell, Coventry, Canterbury and Peterborough.