Research Labs and Testing Machines

Unique Research Labs

There are three specially equipped research labs in the GCC. Each lab is specified to one topic. Listed below you will find information on each of the labs at the GCC.

The adhesive lab with an area of 36m² is directly attached to the machine hall of the GCC and connected to it with a 2.20m wide door. In the adhesive laboratory, a wide variety of samples can be prepared for lamination and small samples can be pre-laminated in pre-composite. In addition, samples are stored here in climate chambers provided for this purpose until they are tested. The last application in the adhesive lab is the inspection of glasses under transmitted light to detect possible inclusions in the glass. The maximum sample or component dimensions that can be processed in the adhesive laboratory are approx. 1.50m x 1.50m.

The melting laboratory is located on the 1st floor and is approx. 21m² in size. Here, small glass elements are melted and joined with other glass elements. Maximum component dimensions that can be treated in the melting lab are approx. 0.5m x 0.5m, with a maximum weight of 20kg. The glass is melted in a special furnace that is thermally insulated.

Also on the 1st floor is the optical lab with a total size of approx. 20m². The special feature of this laboratory is, among other things, the platform projecting into the machine hall with an additional floor space of 2.2m x 2.5m. This platform is used to load the two laboratories on the first floor with large-format glass samples measuring up to 1.0m x 1.0m. In the optical laboratory itself, small glass elements can be examined under a light microscope.

Special Testing Machines

In addition to the research labs, the facility features a broad infrastructure of testing machinery. Listed below you will find information on the available testing machines.

Further information and an image of the ball dropper will be announced soon and will be available on this page.

Also available at the GCC is a cullet scanner with anisotropy and edge membrane tension function. The optical anisotropy effects and the edge membrane stresses can be determined on intact, thermally toughened glass. Furthermore, after the breakage of toughened safety glass on the glass pane of the cullet scanner, the breakage pattern can be recorded and evaluated from a 90° angle. Glass thicknesses from 2.3mm (or 5mm for measuring the edge membrane tension) to 20mm can be scanned in this device. With regard to the geometrically possible dimensions, glass panes smaller than 1,200mm x 1,000mm can be scanned.

For any rheological investigations, the GCC also features a rheometer. This device has a working temperature range in the convection oven from 23°C to 450°C. In combination with a modular nitrogen tank (EVU 10), a temperature range of – 130°C to 300°C can be realised. In addition, the air-cooled Peltier plate temperature control unit can ensure stable and accurate sample temperatures for all types of rheological measurements in the range from -40°C* to +200°C. The usual frequency range for the investigations is 0.01Hz to 100Hz.

In addition to large-scale testing machines, the GCC also has small, handy testing devices such as the Scattered Light Polariscope, or SCALP. This device can be used to measure the progression of mechanical stresses across the thickness of a glass pane. For this purpose, a camera with a resolution of 1280x1024 pixels records the scattering of the laser from the side. The laser has a wavelength of 635nm. The measurement data is transferred to a notebook via USB and processed there with the manufacturer's own software. There are a total of three of these SCALP measuring devices at the GCC.

The GCC's facilities also include the so-called Universal-Surface-Tester, or UST. Equipped with various diamond heads, this machine can apply loads in a force range from 1mN to 1000mN at a resolution of 60nm to a specimen in order to measure or test its surface.

The available tensile testing machine is primarily used for the investigation of glass strength tests and can be operated in the force range 10kN, 20kN and 200kN.

The universal tensile tester at the GCC can perform compression, tension and bending tests with a force of up to 50kN. The possible test range is 640mm in width and 1,325mm in height, with possible test speeds of 0.0005mm/min to 600mm/min. In addition, this testing machine features a switchable climatic chamber with internal dimensions of 450mm x 650mm x 500mm and operating temperatures from -40°C to +250°C. In addition, a relative humidity of 10% to 89% can be set at any time in the range from +10°C to +80°C.

In addition, a wide range of testing equipment at the Materials Testing Institute of the TU Darmstadt can be used if required. More information on the machines and equipment available can be found here.