Channel: Furnace technology
Feracitas: convection in its best and most affordable form

2011-03-01 | Furnace technology

The technology used for the heating of glass in furnaces has developed rapidly over the years. The cause for this is also due to the complex forms of glass used, especially with regards to low-E. In this article, Finnish company Feracitas gives us an idea of the history behind the developments, also comparing the different types of furnaces from some of the main players of the glass machinery industry.

Feracitas: convection in its best and most affordable form
History and status
Convection has been known throughout the history of mankind. Maybe more in cold countries like Finland, where cold and wind keep people well aware of its effects. In Finland there is even saying, “wind freezes the house, but frost does the same for the poor barn”. However, in glass tempering radiation heating was dominating until low emissivity and coated glasses became common. In order to fully understand essential development it is good to remember something of the past. The introduction of roller hearth furnaces revolutionized glass tempering by replacing vertical furnaces. Both of them used radiation heating. Glasstech Inc. of the United States was the pioneer in the change from vertical to horizontal furnaces. However, Tamglass followed quickly, also making interesting developments.
Roller hearth furnaces brought great advantages, but also a problem, into the tempering process. Radiation heating did not keep the roller temperature stable, and the rollers were sometimes too hot or too cold depending on loading conditions. Hot rollers caused two main problems:
- the glasses were ‘smiling’ when entering the furnace due to the hot rollers, resulting in white haze on the glass surface; and
- the glasses sometimes even broke due to the too hot rollers
On the other hand, with continuous full loadings, the roller temperatures dropped and caused glass breakage in tempering and poor glass straightness or instability of the glass panes. That could be partly ...




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Article taken from Glass-Technology International bi-monthly magazine (6 issues per year)
Year: 2011 number: 2
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