Hot Topics - What's New in Fire-Rated Glass & Framing

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TGP strives to help design professionals stay at the forefront of fire-rated and specialty architectural glazing — whether it's the latest product updates, industry news or design ideas. You can learn about the benefits of modern framing materials and the role of fire-rated glass and framing in the Art Institute of Chicago's recent expansion. Read more in this edition of Hot Topics.

The Art Institute of Chicago's Modern Wing

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Attend a lunch presentation in your area on fire-rated glazing or daylighting design. Fire-rated course participants receive one AIA HSW Learning Unit Credit. Daylighting design participants receive one AIA HSW and Sustainable Design Learning Unit Credit.

The courses can also be completed online for AIA credit. Click:
  Fire-rated glazing
  Daylighting design

Making the Earth A Priority

TGP is continually taking steps to lessen the impact of our products and processes on the planet. From recycling 100% of our glass and steel cut-offs, to offering sustainable design education and pursuing LEED certification of our headquarters building, we take our role in protecting the environment seriously.

To learn more about how TGP is making the earth a priority, visit both our fire-rated and architectural Web sites for facts on TGP's environmentally responsible products and practices.

TGP - Fire Rated

The Fireframes ClearFloor™ System lets light shine deep into interior spaces

TGP Adds New Product Specification Resources

To equip architects and designers with the necessary tools to specify and install TGP's most recent product offerings — the Fireframes ClearFloor™ System and the Fireframes® Aluminum Series — corresponding Web pages are now active with links to fact sheets, product specifications and detailed drawings.

Case Study: Art Institute of Chicago Modern Wing Relies on Fire-Rated Glass and Frames

Pilkington Pyrostop™ transparent wall panels and Fireframes® Aluminum Series frames

Built on the rubble of the 1871 Great Chicago Fire, the Art Institute of Chicago embodies history. Today, the museum represents five thousand years of human artistic expression from around the world and continues to integrate Chicago's rich cultural history with avant-garde art.

To allow more comprehensive display views for the museum's growing number of visitors and increase educational space for students, the Art Institute of Chicago commissioned world-renowned architect Renzo Piano, founder of Renzo Piano Building Workshop, to design a "Modern Wing"—the museum's newest addition since 1988. In early 2001, the Renzo Piano Building Workshop teamed with the local architects of record, Interactive Design, Incorporated, Chicago, Illinois, to create the striking new addition.

Following the Modernist adage that form follows function, the new wing was designed with understated architecture, allowing elegant lines and spacious galleries to maintain art as the focal point. Just as important to the museum was the value of integrating the Modern Wing with the original buildings, as well as the vital city center, stunning Chicago skyline and neighboring Millennium Park.

The Art Institute of Chicago quotes Renzo Piano as saying: "My desire was to root the Art Institute's building deeply in this ground, but at the same time to give the Modern Wing air and lightness—to let it levitate. A continuation of an urban fabric, a flight into new experiences."

Located on the northeast corner of the museum campus, the complex, three-story addition appears simple. Double-layered curtainwall forms the exterior of the northern and southern façades, allowing natural light into the galleries and dramatic panoramas of the Chicago skyline and Millennium Park. Suspended above the building's glass, steel and Indiana limestone exterior is the "flying carpet," or rooftop canopy. This unique design element, which filters light into the third floor galleries through computer-modeled blades, is a trademark of the Modern Wing.

Inside, plaster and glass provide intimate gallery settings and clear views in and out to continually inspire artistic expression. A new education center includes activity rooms for children and families, orientation rooms, support offices and a teacher resource center. It is the space in which museum occupants can begin to prepare for what Renzo Piano calls the "sacred" part of the building — the experience of the galleries.

One challenge the architects faced was how to maintain clear lines of sight from historic Michigan Avenue through the space to the fresh landscape of the Millennium Park Courtyard. The interior walls for the education and boardrooms needed to be transparent from floor to ceiling, yet also meet fire and life safety codes. To meet their design goals, the architects desired a versatile, high-quality glass and glazing system.

Click Art Institute of Chicago to read how the architects solved this challenge.

TGP - Architectural

New Product Watch: Hurricane-Rated Pilkington Profilit™ Channel Glass

Hurricane-Rated Pilkington Profilit™ is tested and approved to stand strong against nature's forces

TGP is proud to introduce Hurricane-Rated Pilkington Profilit, a translucent channel glass system that is impact-rated to withstand the ravages of high winds and fierce storms. The system is tested and approved for Miami/Dade County and certified for Florida State Product Approval — the only hurricane impact channel glass system to be tested to these standards.

Hurricane-Rated Pilkington Profilit is impact-rated for 60 PSF design loads at a maximum glass length of ten feet. It is a dual glaze, vertically orientated system with thermally or non-thermally broken frames. For additional protection, polycarbonate is laminated to the interior surface. Numerous colors, coatings, patterns and textures are available to allow designers to incorporate the glazing into a multitude of building designs.

Visit the Web site, or email for more information.

The Case for Modern Framing: Advanced Steel and Aluminum Framing Improve Aesthetics and Sustainable Design

SteelBuilt Curtainwall Infinity™ System's sleek frame profiles help create large, open spans of glass

Upscale shop gains elegance and fire protection from the Fireframes® Aluminum Series

Though sometimes overlooked, the type of window, door and curtainwall framing system selected is critical to the overall performance of daylighting systems. Framing materials influence the size of glazed panes possible, sightline depths and amount of cast shadows, as well as how efficiently a daylighting system manages heat gain and loss. Modern steel and aluminum framing assemblies can help create visually stimulating and effective daylighting systems.

Steel Framing

Modern steel framing is nearly three times stiffer than traditional aluminum assemblies. This allows designers to incorporate larger glazed panes and taller free spans for greater amounts of light. Slender steel framing helps to shape elegant curtainwall designs where the glazing — not the framing — takes center stage. Additionally, the crisp sightlines provided by narrow frame dimensions improve landscape views and reduce the impact of cast shadows.

Buildings that incorporate modern steel framing can also help reduce the potential for heat gain and loss — a factor as critical for energy savings as it is for the comfort of building occupants. The systems are watertight and the low heat transfer coefficient of steel helps ensure less heat transfer and interior condensation on frames.

Fire-Rated Aluminum Framing

Unlike traditional aluminum hollow-metal frames, some modern aluminum framing assemblies have sleek profiles that are suitable for use in fire-rated applications. When paired with fire-rated glass, the framing system can also provide a barrier to radiant and conductive heat transfer.

These advancements allow for unlimited areas of glazing in fire separations to protect against the spread of smoke and flames. They also offer design professionals an attractive alternative to traditional aluminum framing systems, with slender frame profiles. With the ability to incorporate fire-rated glazing where fire protection is required, design professionals can bring natural light deep into interior spaces that otherwise would have been blocked by opaque fire-stopping materials like concrete or gypsum.

TGP offers a number of framing products to help improve your daylighting designs, including SteelBuilt Curtainwall® Systems and Fireframes® Aluminum Series fire-rated framing.

Request for Photography

If you have a recent project that incorporated our products (such as Pilkington Pyrostop™, Fireframes®, FireLite® family of products, Pilkington Profilit™ or Neoparies®), we would like to see it. Simply e-mail snapshots and a brief description to Your work could be featured in a case study in Hot Topics or in a national publication.

Technical Glass Products
8107 Bracken Place SE
Snoqualmie, WA 98065
Fax: 1-800-451-9857

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