The study attributes a variety of factors to this increase in demand, including the recovery of residential building construction activity from a weak 2007 base, ongoing rapid growth in a variety of emerging technologies and strong gains in laminated glass used as hurricane-resistant glass, ballistic glass and burglary-resistant glass.
According to the study, security and safety glass products, including both tempered and laminated flat glass, represent the largest group of advanced flat glass materials, accounting for 62 percent of total demand in 2007. While certain of these products are relatively mature (such as tempered safety glass for motor vehicles), there remain a number of opportunities for advanced flat glass, particularly for laminated flat glass used as hurricane glass, burglary glass, ballistic glass and motor vehicle safety glass.
Consumption of hurricane glass, specifically, is forecasted to advance 7.9 percent annually to $380 million in 2012. Regulations in hurricane-prone areas, increasing consumer acceptance of the product as an alternative to metal shutter systems, are expected to drive this growth. According to the study, demand for hurricane glass currently is concentrated in Florida, since it is entirely in the hurricane zone and has been the most pro-active in demanding increased hurricane preparedness in new building construction. However, higher levels of demand are expected to develop along the Eastern seaboard as hurricane glass becomes the standard for new construction in hurricane-prone areas.
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