Insulated glass (IG) is a special glass made of two or three glass panes which are separated by dry air. It is measured in insulated glass units (IGUs). It is also known as double glazing. It is available in varying levels of thickness. The extra glass panes aid in regulating heat levels within homes and non-residential buildings. Its applications include doors, skylights, windows, and others. Energy efficient buildings which cab drive down energy costs by using IG is driving the insulating glass market.
Low-emissivity (low-E) insulated glass can reduce heat levels within the room. They are usually treated with low-E coatings. Windows or doors with low-E coatings can transfer heat among themselves. This allows it to regulate the temperature within the room according to the environment outside. They are approximately 15% more expensive than regular windows but save nearly 50% in energy bills. They are currently being incorporated in old buildings in Europe on account of rising energy expenses.
Double insulated low-E glass can retain twice the heat of a regular window, while triple insulated low-E glass can retain three times the energy. The European Union (EU) can utilize IG technology in all its retro buildings to meet its energy target. It aims to negate nearly 97 million tons of CO2 by 2020. Dwindling reserves of fossil fuels will prompt the EU to look towards IG as a viable option. Pilkington Optitherm™ S1 Plus is a product by NSG (Nippon Sheet Glass) which can reduce heat levels within the room.
The global insulating glass market can attain more than USD 4 billion by 2025, according to Grand View Research, Inc. Use of energy-efficient materials in the construction of residential and commercial buildings will favor market growth. Non-residential construction was the largest market application in 2015. It is estimated to grow at 8% CAGR from 2016 to 2024. Residential construction is touted to grow at a significant rate on account of residential homes being built in developing countries.
Asia Pacific captured more than 40% market shares in 2015. It had accounted for USD 846.1 million in the same year. The high regional growth can be attributed to the varied climates in China and Japan. Regional market demand can pick up due to interest in Thailand, Indonesia, and India. Europe will experience a sluggish growth rate from 2015 to 2025 (forecast period). Some prominent players of the insulating glass market are Saint-Gobain S.A.; NSG (Pilkington); and Viracon, Inc.