"The most radical shift that the glazing industry in India witnessed in the last decade has been a shift to a bonding system based on Pressure Sensitive Adhesive Technology (PSAT) which speeds up fabrication many fold, yet develops very strong and durable bonds. The words "Green" and "Sustainable" are buzz words today. To us "Going Green" is already a culture that we are living in. At 3M, we always respect our environment, and are pioneers in the 3P movement - "Pollution Prevention Pays 3M is engaged in educating the industry with regard to the right selection of materials, the data/documents that need to be referred to, drafting tight specifications - be it a bonding system or any other component in the glazing system," says Mr. Ashutosh Shirodkar, General Manager, Industrial Adhesives & Tapes Division - 3M India Ltd. in an interview with MGS Architecture.
What is the latest trend and technological advancement that have been witnessed in the Glazing industry in India?
Glass Glazing has become extremely popular in India. Consequently, the industry has witnessed numerous innovations that provide several options for architects and consultants to tailor designs to suit very specific needs of the customer and yet be cost-effective. There has been a quantum leap in technology in terms of "Next Gen" Glasses; so also the immense development in advanced aluminium systems. Parallely, a significant amount of research has been taking place in polymer and adhesive materials. However, this has led to very little advancement in the conventional bonding system used in the glazing industry to meet today’s fast paced construction boom and changing technical requirements.
The most radical shift that the glazing industry in India witnessed in the last decade has been a shift to a bonding system based on PSAT which speeds up fabrication many fold, yet develops very strong and durable bonds.
What are the opportunities and challenges in the sector?
Glass is now an integral part of modern architecture and is here to stay. The PSA technology offers the greatest flexibility to a glazier as he can design a very efficient and effective process layout to maximise the benefits. It also offers scope to eliminate many non-value added processes and materials, great savings - both direct and indirect - with assurance of 100% quality for every panel fabricated. For architects, this means the opportunity to explore modern and contemporary design options without compromising on aesthetics.
The challenge is, however, the adaptability to new technology. The industry has to exercise an open and flexible mind to adopt the proven technology, based on the technical context. Needless to say, the technical capability of the supplier needs to be ascertained to make sure that the right product is selected for the application. The major challenge is to differentiate and implement technology that is qualified on all the construction specific standards, that has a demonstrated performance track record, and proven durability like 3M™ VHB™.
With growing acceptance of green construction concepts, how has glazing fared in the Indian market? How would you correlate sustainability with your products and solutions?
The words "Green" and "Sustainable" are buzz words today. To us "Going Green" is already a culture that we are living in. At 3M, we always respect our environment, and are pioneers in the 3P movement - "Pollution Prevention Pays" which is aimed at reducing pollution significantly every year. We have a long standing history of introducing many steps towards sustainability. The pressure sensitive technology that is introduced in the glazing market has far lower volatile organic components than other chemically curing bonding systems that are conventionally used. The components involved also have safe disposal methods and are environment-friendly.
Safety issue is of great concern while selecting fittings for glass as these are used in critical structural & load bearing applications like Façades, roofs, canopies; how are you helping buyers in selecting the quality products in place of substandard fittings?
At 3M, safety comes first and this philosophy is strongly embedded in every action that we take across the globe. 3M VHB has more than 40 years of research backing it and has undergone stringent evaluations in line with application and service requirements. We have undergone a wide series of systematic tests to demonstrate capability under dynamic load conditions, evaluations to arrive at material strength properties, structural tests, seismic tests, durability tests etc. We have invested significantly to develop technical capabilities to support this application, and support our customers with all the required design support, lab evaluation of the components involved, training, auditing etc. We do offer up to 20 years of application warranty.
Our recent introduction of Extreme Sealing Tape for Roof joints in Skylights has proven to be a unique solution in preventing leakages in existing and new Skylights.
How mature is the market in terms of understanding products and its proper usage? What is the role of your organization in imparting proper education/training to the architects/planners for the right application/installation of the glass or fittings?
The glazing industry in India is at a mature stage currently with architects and designers vying to try newer designs and to try alternate façade materials providing newer designs or applications to the towering world of glass. The industry appreciates quality products and is open to new technology advancements. However, when it comes to commercial completion, there is still an unhealthy race to complete the projects with minimum spending that ends up in diluting certain basic qualifying characteristics. 3M is engaged in educating the industry with regard to the right selection of materials, the data/ documents that need to be referred to, drafting tight specifications - be it a bonding system or any other component in the glazing system. This is done in a continuous and focused manner, through technical seminars, conferences, participation in trade shows etc to propagate the "Quality Glazing" message.
We have been successfully serving the Glazing Industry in India by providing fast and reliable Bonding solutions, for over 17 years and have several project references across the Country. A dedicated Sales & Technical team, located in each potential location across India, helps us maintain our proximity to our customers and solve their concerns regularly.