Who Invented Tempered Glass?

September 5, 2019 10:47 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Tempered glass is a type of safety glass that is about four time stronger than normal glass. While normal glass shatters into jagged shards, tempered glass breaks into tiny, nearly harmless pieces. Tempered glass is often used in situations where safety is a concern, such as:

  • Glass entrance doors
  • Microwaves
  • Patio furniture
  • Shower or tub enclosures
  • Side and rear car windows
  • Skylights

As a local source for car window repairs in Oklahoma City, OK for over a decade, we’ve made knowing all there is to know about glass a passion of ours, from how it’s made to who first made it. Interested in knowing who invented tempered glass? Well, keep reading to find out!

How tempered glass is made

Tempering is a process of improving the hardness of a material by reheating it and cooling it. Think of rewarmed leftover pizza—if you put that pizza in the microwave, let it cool, reheat it, and do that a few more times, you will have what is essentially a pizza rock. We know this from experience.

Tempered glass is obviously not made in a microwave, but the same general concept applies. To make tempered glass, the glass is heated almost to the molten stage and is then submerged in cool water. This process is what makes the tempered glass about five times stronger than normal glass.

Who invented tempered glass?

So now we get down to the real question: Who first invented tempered glass, and how did they come up with the idea? The answer to that question is up for debate, but here are the top candidates:

  • Prince Rupert: In 1660, Prince Rupert of the Rhine brought what were known as “Prince Rupert’s Drops” to England. These drops were made of glass and were nearly indestructible. The glass drops were made by placing a single drop of molten glass into a bath of cold water. The glass drop was solid and could be “smashed” without breaking. Prince Rupert’s Drops were such a phenomenon in England that they were given out as party favors.
  • Frederick Siemens: In 1876, Frederick Siemens received a patent for his process for the hardening of glass. He would heat sheets of glass and then place them in a cool bath.
  • George E. Rogens: In the same year that Frederick Siemens received his patent, George E. Rogens also received a patent for a similar process for hardening the glass of street lamps.

We’ll leave it to you to decide who truly deserves the title of the actual inventor of tempered glass, but our money is on Prince Rupert and his party favors!

Regardless of who first invented it, tempered glass has and continues to save lives and protect people from injury. As your local source for car window repairs in Oklahoma City, OK, we know for a fact that tempered glass helps keep people safe on the road. If you are interested in learning more about tempered glass and the services we offer at Eagle 1 Autoglass, call us or stop in today!

Categorised in:

This post was written by Writer

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *