This research work assessed glass and its application in building construction using some selected sites in Benin City, Edo state as case study. The objectives of this research were; to establish the importance of the use of glass in building project, to compare the cost between the use of glass and other materials for some selected elements in building projects. Various literatures were set out to review the objectives in extensive forms to proffer detail understanding. The research data were collected through questionnaires administered to the users of glass in the case study taken by carrying out a field survey. The data collected were subjected to descriptive analysis. From the findings it was found that there are different types of glass used in the construction industry of which include; sheet glass, float glass, plate glass, temper glass, figured glass, laminated glass, wired glass, and the chief process used for glass production are; melting of the raw material, refining to achieve homogeneity of the molten glass, working to form the glass into desired shape, annealing to relieve internal stresses developed during the working stage. From the findings it was also observed that glass as a material is mostly used for the construction of doors, windows in different types of buildings and in place of blocks. Finally it concluded that glass should be used more extensively in building construction because it has important construction properties that other materials lack, glass has good construction properties with different applications, its technological and aesthetic functionality in building, and Glass when used, also reduce the total dead load of a building because they are light in weight and this makes it more relevant especially in high – rise building and storey buildings.
Table 1: showing how different types of glass direct and diffuse light.
Table 4.1: Age of respondents
Table 4.2: Respondent sex
Table 4.3: Respondent status
Table 4.4: Educational status
Table 4.5: Material used in the construction of doors, windows and walls
Table 4.6: Category of labour
Table 4.7: Glass in place of blocks
Table 4.8: Glass as a material is more expensive
Table 4.9: Glass should be encouraged
Table 4.10: Fragility of glass
Table 4.11: Environmental hazard
Table 4.12: Impact of Resistivity
Table 4.13: Durability of Glass
Table 4.14: Transparency of glass
Table 4.15: Resistivity of glass to load
Table 4.16: Glass as sound insulator
Table 4.17: Glass as heat insulator
Table 4.18: Transmission of daylight
Table 4.19: Density and conductivity of heat
Table 4.20: Glass as ceiling
Table 4.21: Types of building where glass is mostly used
Plate 1: Sketch of glass window showing the entering of light rays into the building
Plate 2: Diagram of building showing entering of light
Plate 3: Section of window panes
Plate 4: Diagram of glass window
Plate 5: Diagram of glass door
As the demand of glass in building construction increase in our society it becomes necessary for us to have a complete understanding of its properties, manufacturing process, types and applications. Generally, glass is light in weight. This is one of the reasons why it is widely used in building construction. It reduces the dead load on the building structure. The application of glass in buildings is also due to its aesthetic properties. Glass has a lustrous nature which makes building beautiful. (Udegbe, 2005).
Glass is a material which can be classified as synthetic. It is made up of a mixture of metallic trioxosilicate(iv). It is prepared by heating a mixture of silicon (iv) oxide and the appropriate metallic oxides and trioxo-carbonate(iv) at 1300 degree Celsius – 1400. Small quantities of powered glass and coke are usually added to improve the quality. The quality of glass produced is dependent on its composition (Amadin, 2005). According to other schools of thought, glass is a homogenous isotropic material normally produced by cooling a melt. It is a solid material that has hardened and become rigid without crystallising. If a material is allowed to cool slowly, from the liquid state, the cooling curve obtained, may be either continuous or discontinuous as the temperature falls. There is a steady decrease in the kinetic energy of the atoms or molecules that make up the liquid and hence a steady increase in the viscosity of the fluid or material that show cooling curves, taking into consideration, changes during cooling from true fluids through stages of steady increase of viscosity into an apparently solid condition. The atoms or molecules present still have the same types of random arrangement that existed in the true fluid state. Such materials are amorphous solids or glasses.
Glass is an amorphous solid. A material is when it has no long range order. That is, there is no regularity in the arrangement of its molecular constituents on a scale larger than a few times the size of these groups. For instance, the average distance between silicon atoms in vitreous silicon is about 0.36nm and there is order between these atoms at distance above about 1nm.
Glass is also an inorganic product of fusion that has cooled to a rigid condition on without crystallizing. Glasses of commerce are mainly silicates in chemical combination with numerous other oxidic substances made by melting the source materials together, forming fluid in various ways. This definition is prone to some object ions because glasses have been produced without necessarily quenching a melt. For example, radiation damages, vapour deposition and solution reactions have shown that glasses can be made without cooling a melt. Regardless of it being used for windows, façade or interior partitions, glass connects the space, improves the quality of space, transmits sufficient light and the contemporary types of glass may contribute to energy saving. It is known that energy is one of the most important architectonic challenges of our age. (Vigener, 2009). Glass must nowadays conform to the high standards regarding safety of the users and passers by, thus they are made resistant to shicks and abrupt temperature changes, and in chase they would not break in. The manufacturer tried in this way to keep the risk of injury to a minimum (Vineger, 2009).
It seems maintenance is a major issue associated with glass that is difficulty in cleaning especially in high rise buildings. Reflective glass has thermal stresses during climatic changes.
The aim of this study is to appraise the best application of glass in building projects. To achieve this aim, the following objectives where considered:
- To establish the importance of the use of glass in building projects.
- To compare the cost between the use of glass and other building materials for some selected elements in building projects.
- To identity the different properties, functions and purpose of glass.
This study is concern with the application of glass in Residential and Commercial buildings. It also focuses on the relevance of glass in buildings, and types of glass and their specifications.
This research at the end of the day will throw more light on glass and its application in building construction. Its results will be of relevance to professional builders, civil engineers, architect, quantity surveyors, and all those who are in the building construction industry. This study will also help to enhance the use of glass and its application in high rise buildings, bungalow, storey buildings mostly in Nigeria, it will also help people to know that glass is essential in building construction.
Benin City is a city(2006 est.pop. 1,147,188) and the capital of Edo state in southern Nigeria. It is a city approximately 40-kilometers (25mi) north of the Benin river. It is situated 320kilometers (200mi) by road east of Lagos. Benin is the Centre of Nigeria’s rubber industry, but processing palm kernel for oil is also an important traditional industry. The original people and founder of the Edo EMPIRE and Edo people, were initially ruled by the Ogiso (Kings of the sky) dynasty who called their land Igodomigodo. The rulers or kings were commonly known as Ogiso. Igodo, the first Ogiso, wielded much influence and gained popularity as a good ruler. He died after a long reign and was succeeded by Ere, his eldest son.