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10 Facts About Glass You Should Know About

Everyday,Over 4 billion people make use of glass ranging from glass cups to glass jars to car windshield to architecture to the glass pair that aids your sight,even that mirror you gaze on before heading out.Just think about it, We have made glass a daily part of your life consciously or subconsciously so it is safe to say we are in the "Glass age".

Different companies pushing the boundaries of glass quality each day, So here are some fun facts about glass you probably should know about.

 1) Glass is natural.

General knowledge that you need sand to make glass which is true but what type of sand exactly and is sand all you really need to make glass? well glass is created by melting minerals together at high temperatures. Silica,this is the form of sand you need, is the main ingredient and is combined with soda ash and limestone melted in a furnace at high temperatures. Other materials and minerals can be added to produce different colours.

2) Glass has been made for over 5,000 years!

From our earliest origins, man has been making glass. Archaeologists have found evidence of man-made glass dating back to 4,000BC in the form of coatings on stone beads. Around 1,500 BC the Egyptians made the first glass bottles in a state we would recognise today and Egyptians were the first recorded civilization to produce glass as they were very vast in knowledge.

3) Nature can also make glass.

When lightning strikes silica sand, glass can be formed by the high temperature. These glass tube or ‘fulgurites’ are formed when lightning with a temperature of at least 1,800 °C melts the silica and fuses the grains of sand together; this only takes about a second! Mind blowing right?

4) Glass packaging is pure.

Glass containers are impermeable, air-tight, and transparent. You can see the freshness of food and beverages without any change in taste. Glass packaging can handle vacuum or high-pressure sealing, safeguarding against moisture and oxygen. This protects food and beverages from spoilage and bacteria.

5 ) Glass containers are lighter than ever.

Today’s glass containers are more than 40% lighter than they were 20 years ago. Light weighting efforts continue throughout the industry. A good example is the coca-cola bottle, You cant compare the weight of the old bottles that were made lets say 1995 to the present one. The old ones were obviously thicker and heavier.

6) Glass recycling has many benefits.

Glass can be recycled again and again without ever losing its clarity or purity. Every ton of glass recycled prevents the quarrying of 1.2 tons of raw materials. Bottles and jars manufactured in South Africa contain at least 40% recycled content, one of the highest percentages for packaging in South Africa.

7) Glass recycling saves energy.

Making new glass from recycled glass uses much less energy than using raw materials.The energy saving from recycling just one bottle will power one of the following:

*A computer for 30 minutes.

*A colour TV for 20 minutes.

*A washing machine for 10 minutes.

So start recycling people.

8) If the average household recycled all their glass in a year, enough energy would be saved to power:

*A computer for 5 days

*A colour TV for nearly 4.5 days

*A washing machine for 2.5 days

9) Glass is coloured by natural colourants.

Different Colours can be obtained by simply adding small quantities of different oxides:

Amber Glass – Amber which is the most common coloured glass, and is produced by adding together carbon, sulphur, and iron.

Green Glass – Green Glass is made by adding non-toxic Chrome Oxide; the higher the concentration, the darker the colour.

Blue Glass – Blue glass is created by adding cobalt oxide, only a few parts per million is needed to produce a light blue colour such as the shade used for certain bottled waters.

10)Flexible glass.

Yes! you read that right, Roman history has it that a craftsman made a drinking bowl made of flexible glass, when presented before Emperor Tiberius Caesar (between 14–37 AD) he tried to smash the bowl but wouldn't. Only a dent was made and it was easily fixed by the craftsman with a small hammer, after the inventor swore to the Emperor that he alone knew the technique of manufacture, Tiberius had the man beheaded, fearing such material could undermine the value of gold and silver.

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