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IGMA technical conference: Day 1


June 4, 2012
By Patrick Flannery

tech_committee_smallJune 4, 2012 – The Insulating Glass Manufacturer's Alliance kicked off its Summer Technical Conference today at the Ottawa Marriott. It was standing room only in the conference room as IGMA board members, members of the Technical Services Committee and observers met to hear updates on the work of various standards committees, a keynote speech from one of Canada's first female fighter pilots, Deanna Brasseur, and to plot the course of the association going forward.

June 4, 2012 – The Insulating Glass Manufacturer's Alliance kicked off
its Summer Technical Conference today at the Ottawa Marriott. It was
standing room only in the conference room as IGMA board members, members
of the Technical Services Committee and observers met to hear updates
on the work of various standards committees, a keynote speech from one
of Canada's first female fighter pilots, Deanna Brasseur, and to plot
the course of the association going forward.

The association heard from the task group working on ASTM E 2431 that a methodology has been developed to test IG units for thermal stress failures, but the funding was not available to do the necessary laboratory testing to bring the technical bulletin fully into the ASTM standard. IGMA executive director Margaret Webb reported that the research and development fund needed $63,000 more to complete the project, and proposed a mandatory assessment to members of $200 each to help cover the costs. The vote was thrown open to all members in the room and passed with very few objections. The committee has recommended to the board that annual IGMA dues now include a $200 assessment for the research and development fund. The committee then passed another resolution asking the board to immediately fund the thermal stress standard development using contributions from other organizations or whatever other funds were available.

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 brasseur_small 
 Brasseur delivered an inspiring message.


 

Deanna Brasseur presented a motivating talk detailing her rise within the Canadian military to become one of the first female fighter pilots in the world. She passed along what she has learned about how a can-do attitude can unlock personal potential to overcome any obstacle. Brasseur also shared some hair-raising stories from her years in the cockpit.

The Technical Services Group discussed comments received on drafts of guidelines for general glazing and multiple-cavity IGUs. IGMA technical consultant Bill Lingnell reported progress from the ISO Standards Insulating Glass Working Group and several ASTM committees looking at issues as diverse as standards for spandrels, IG applications in very hot climates, determining argon gas concentrations, and destructive and non-destructive testing of etched glass and glass in air traffic control towers. Lignell said he remains hopeful that Canadian authorities will agree to reference ASTM E 1300 load standards in upcoming revisions of the National Building Code.

The committee heard from other North American glazing organizations, including the Glazing Association of North America, Energy Star, the American Architectural Manufacturers Association, Fenestration Canada and the National Fenestration Rating Council. Jim Krahn of Marvin Windows and Doors reported that American Energy Star authorities feel too many products on the market today meet Energy Star requirements and are considering tightening regulations to the point where as few as 15 to 20 per cent of fenestration products might qualify. Steve Hopwood of National Resources Canada concurred, saying tighter standards are in the offing in Canada, too. "Energy Star is perhaps the only program that is always trying to put itself out of business," he said.

Hopwood also reported his office is working closely with Fenestration Canada and other organizations to create a unified Canadian standard for energy efficiency in fenestration. He said the current patchwork of provincial, federal and municipal standards are creating problems for manufacturers. NRCan will conduct a market survey next year to determine what needs a unified standard would have to fulfill.

Hopwood also pointed to condensation control as another area of interest for NRCan research. Problems related to fourth-surface low-e designs bear further investigation, he said.

Jeff Baker of Fenestration Canada reported that the Fenestration Installation Technician certification program is close to completion and that the Siding and Window Dealers Association has already begun using the standard in its training programs.

Tracey Rogers of Quanex proposed IGMA create a consumer-level document on glass visual quality describing acceptable industry standards for inclusions and clarity in terms that homeowners would understand. He said it would help contractors to explain the product to customers complaining about very small flaws in glass lites. The committee voted to have Rogers' Visual Quality Task Group draft such a document.

Related links
Insulating Glass Manufacturer's Alliance


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