New ASTM Standard for Glass and Glazing Systems Published
August 18, 2011

By Sahely Mukerji

The ASTM F2912 - 11 Standard Specification for Glazing and Glazing Systems Subject to Airblast Loadings, was published August 11. The specification covers exterior windows, glazed curtainwalls, glazing panels in doors and other glazed protective systems used in buildings that may be subjected to intentional or accidental explosions.

"ASTM F 2912 was created to provide guidance to those interested in incorporating bomb-blast resistance into their facilities when they don't have the benefit of a government specified mandate for performance," says Julia Schimmelpenningh, global applications manager of Advanced Interlayers, a division of Solutia Inc. in Springfield, Mass. "It is structured to ensure the critical parameters for blast design are communicated in the specification: load, duration, protection/hazard level, this ensures a more rapid translation of product configurations for quotes and delivery. The publication of this specification is hoped to demystify blast resistance to some extent and make it a much mire common consideration for commercial and industrial facilities."

The specification addresses only glazing and glazing systems, and does not address the structural integrity and functionality of door assemblies. It assumes that the designer has verified that other structural elements have been adequately designed to resist the anticipated air-blast pressures.

Designed for all glazing, glazing systems and glazing retrofit systems, the specification includes those fabricated from glass, plastic, glass-clad plastics, laminated glass, glass/plastic glazing materials and organic coated glass. It does not determine the assessment of a facility nor acceptable hazard ratings. Threat and risk assessment shall have already been performed and the acceptable hazard rating defined.

The values stated in International System of Units (SI) are to be regarded as the standard. Values given in parentheses are for information only.

"[The] standard offers a hazard rating system for glazing systems that can be specified for nongovernmental buildings," says Urmilla Jokhu-Sowell, technical director of the Glass Association of North America (GANA) of Topeka, Kan. "Designers can now specify glazing products by different hazard levels that can offer protection from intentional or accidental explosions."

The standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of the standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

"The specification is evergreen and will be under a 5-year review cycle," Schimmelpenningh says. "Any comments for improvement or clarification are welcome and can be sent to me.

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