Glasstec 2008: the sector is booming and so is the trade fair

Number of companies registered for the previous event is already exceeded. Glass and Energy is the focal theme Five months to the start of the trade fair and glasstec 2008 is already breaking all records.

Posting 1,000 exhibitors on exhibition space of over 65,500 m² the leading trade fair for the glass sector is now as big as ever. Delighted with the figures Project Director Marianne Ingenhoven said: “We are extremely satisfied with the great demand. We are receiving new enquiries from companies around the world every single day.” She went on to say how interest from international glass producers, in particular, has risen once again over the previous event. Until the official opening of glasstec from 21 to 25 October 2008 Messe Düsseldorf expects further exhibitors to register. Marianne Ingenhoven adds: “Needless to say, this outstanding development of glasstec has not just happened coincidentally. Glass is today as much in demand as ever and companies naturally also want to fly their flags at the world’s leading sectoral event.”

Market leader presence plus high-calibre side events like the Special Show “glass technology live” including Symposium as well as the Architectural Congress “Transparency! Glass and Facade Technology” offer trade visitors unrivalled, all-round information for future investment decisions.

Focal Point Photovoltaics and Solar Thermal Systems

Two of the key themes covered at this year’s glasstec are photovoltaics and solar thermal systems. The “Solar and Laser Center” in Hall 11 of the Exhibition Centre displays interesting innovations such as novel thin-film modules; with their films only measuring a few thousandths of a millimetre they constitute a promising alternative to conventional silicon solar cells. Furthermore, the solar theme will also be the central topic on two of the five conference days of the Technical Symposium that accompanies the “glass technology live” Special Show. Here manufacturing technologies, products and ways of building integration are centre stage.

However, the other segments of the glass industry will focus just as much on innovations at glasstec 2008 and a tour of the trade fair reflects the diversity of this booming market: ranging from craftsman-type finishers and processors of glass presenting their practical applications of this material in Hall 9, the finishing of flat and hollow glass, the construction of glass furniture to the use of glass as a lifestyle product in modern architecture. In the neighbouring Halls 10 and 11 firms representing the glass industry and production will showcase their spectacular new developments guaranteed to become part of our everyday lives in a short time. Anti-microbial glass that kills up to 99.9 % of bacteria is suitable for applications in both hospitals and nursing homes but also in private households and will play an important role in the years to come. High-tech features such as titanium coatings applied to the outer side of panes (for instance, to ensure sunlight degrades soil deposits) are suited not only to major applications but also for sunglasses.

The largest exhibition area of glasstec is glass machinery and equipment construction. For the producers presented to trade visitors in Halls 12 to 17, participation at the trade fair is a must. Especially for export-focused German and Italian firms with exports accounting for 80 % of their sales, participation in Düsseldorf is indispensable because this is the only place to meet key decision makers from almost every corner of the globe in the shortest time. The No. 1 theme of this year’s glasstec, solar technology, has also become a significant market for glass machinery manufacturers. After all, producers of solar products require reliable, high-performance production equipment to develop their business successfully on a growing market now and in the future.

Visitors can enjoy a moment of relaxation in the glamorous world of glass while contemplating “glassart”. Here international artists exhibit their works using this natural material, glass. Exhibits range from containers and sculptures to glass paintings.

“glass technology live” – a glimpse into the future

The Special Show “glass technology live” in Hall 11 will also come under the “glass and energy” heading. Organiser Professor Stephan Behling and his Institute of Building Construction at Stuttgart University have devised a presentation here that covers both today’s resource-saving measures and a preview of tomorrow’s technologies. The Innovationpark will feature the four segments “Light and Transparency”, “Photovoltaics”, “Solar Thermal Systems” and “Heat and Solar Protection”. Current international architecture projects and glass applications will demonstrate the implementation and integration of the latest technologies in insulation glass, windows and façades and provide information on the construction of energy-efficient and integrative building skins along with relevant manufacturing and production processes.

The accompanying symposium offers lecture series that are amongst the most prestigious in the sector worldwide. This year the symposium will address such topical issues as “Glass for Energy-Saving and Generating Applications” or simply “Glass Architecture”. Projects of international acclaim such as the New York Times Building, designed by Architects Renzo Piano or the “Elbphilharmonie” designed by Herzog & de Meuron provide compelling evidence of the sensational and versatile applications possible with glass as a construction material.

International Conference for Architects

“Transparency! Glass and Façade Technology“ – the motto of the Architecture Congress on 24 October at glasstec 2008 could hardly be more fitting. The North Rhine-Westphalian Chamber of Architects and the Technical University of Delft in the Netherlands developed the event concept as early as two years ago and will also be organising this year’s congress. Architects, structural engineers, air-con engineers and façade planners including the likes of Lise Ann Couture (Asymptote Architecture, New York), Chris Wilkinson (Wilkinson Eyre architects, London), Professor Stephan Behling (Foster and Partners, London, Institute for Building Construction at Stuttgart University), Thomas Auer (Transsolar, Klimaengineering, Stuttgart), Professor Dr.-Ing. Holger Techen (University of Applied Sciences, Frankfurt am Main), Prof. Dr. Ulrich Knaack, TU Delft and Andrea Compagno (Façade Planning and Consulting, Zürich) will draw on their practical experience to impart ideas and possible applications for “Glass and Façade Technology”. Reflections on the glass technology of tomorrow will be presented by Professor Bernhard Weller of the Institute of Building Construction at the Technical University of Dresden.

600450 Glasstec 2008: the sector is booming and so is the trade fair
Date: 5 June 2008

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