Print this pagePrint this page
Text Size

Glass in Vehicles

As a world leader in automotive glazing, we aim to provide opportunities for vehicle manufacturers to address sustainability issues, such as CO2 reduction, solar control, vehicle weight, aerodynamics and recycling.

Demand is increasing from vehicle manufacturers for glazing solutions that meet the challenge to design cars that are kinder to the environment.

Vehicle manufacturers look towards the supply base to develop and deliver products that address energy reduction, energy generation and recyclability.

We are supplying glass used in automotive photovoltaic roof systems that can actively supply power to the vehicle, helping reduce reliance on conventional energy sources.

We aim both to reduce energy used during the manufacture of products and to increase their contribution to sustainability during their lifetime. Opportunities include glazing weight reduction, windshields that do not mist, so reducing the need to operate air-conditioning, and coated glazing to keep the cabin cool in summer and warm in winter. We are constantly improving glass performance, enabling vehicle makers to use windshields and backlights with lower installation angles, enabling more aerodynamic and fuel-efficient designs.

Hybrid and electric vehicles

Increasing global emphasis on fuel economy and the need to mitigate the effects of transportation on the environment have accelerated demand for vehicles that deliver better environmental performance. The importance of hybrid and electric vehicles is growing, as consumers demand more environmentally-friendly models.

We are working with a variety of established automotive manufacturers and new entrants who are developing new vehicles that are greener by design. Vehicle glazing is not only important in creating a modern exterior design, but can also contribute significantly to the feeling of space inside the car and all-around visibility.

Popular in the smaller car segments is the use of modular glazing systems; fully-integrated or multi-panel rooflights and backlight quarter-light combinations. These inevitably bring with them more complex shaping requirements that the NSG Group, through its experience of designing and delivering processes and products, from the float-glass process to proprietary glass-bending technology, is well placed to address.

Lightweight glazing

There can be over 13 individual pieces of glazing on a vehicle, all contributing significantly to overall weight and affecting fuel consumption. We are focused on the introduction of lightweight glass and glazing technology, with the launch of reduced thickness laminated and toughened sidelights, backlights, windshields and rooflights.

Our in-house developments for glass-shaping technology now make it possible for vehicle manufacturers to reduce the mass of glass components by up to 25 percent.

Glass in vehicles offers more properties than simple transparency, so when designing vehicles for reduced mass in the components, consideration needs to be given to acoustics, stiffness, sealing and guiding systems and solar control.

Solar control technology

Approximately 30 percent of the heat loading on a car’s interior comes through the windshield.

The relationship between high-performance solar control glazing and vehicle CO2 emissions reduction has long been recognized. It is accepted that control of heat energy entering vehicles directly impacts air-conditioning usage and will lead to reduced fuel consumption and CO2 output. Our advanced solar control
glass can make a significant contribution to the reduction of air-conditioning usage by reducing solar heat gain.

Our vehicle glazing products provide advanced solar control by absorbing or reflecting infra-red energy from the sun. Our range of optimized green and privacy solar absorbing glasses can reduce the heat entering a vehicle by up to 65 percent.
Advanced glass coatings used in laminated glazing can selectively allow the transmission of visible light while rejecting heat entering vehicles. Combining solar control properties with a heating function within the glass, for removing condensation, can reduce air-conditioning use on a year-round basis.

Glazing systems

We develop and supply not only glass, but also glazing systems used to mount and seal the products in vehicle apertures. We work constantly to decrease component content, with a view to reduced cost and weight.

New technology areas, such as integral seals, significantly reduce processing steps and the amount of hardware needed to transform glass products to glazing products. Issues such as driver visibility and pedestrian safety overlay our work in the development of the next generation of automotive glazing.

Glass and end-of-life vehicles

Glass typically constitutes around 3 percent of the composition of an average car. We are actively involved in the elimination of harmful materials in glass, ink, solder and other components in automotive glass products.

Pilkington Sundym™ Select: Variable light transmission glazing

Shown fitted in the Mercedes SLK, Pilkington Sundym Select™ can be switched instantly from clear to tinted mode.Tinted windows that darken at the touch of a button are now a reality for motorists; thanks to NSG Group technology.

Our new Pilkington Sundym Select™ was launched on the Mercedes-Benz SLK rooflight in 2011. It is the first time that variable light transmission technology has been available in a mass-production car.

The product offers a range of benefits. It provides the best solar control available from any automotive glass product for reduced heat entry and removes the need for a mechanical blind system. This helps reduce weight and increases the car headroom, or allows for vehicle height reduction, and better aerodynamics.