Throughout all of 2014, Glaston had exceptionally strong FC500 tempering furnace sales in the UK market. The latest contract signed in early December with European Glass Group is for two more FC500 lines, one of which will be the biggest FC500 furnace that Glaston has sold to date. This deal now brings the total number of Glaston furnaces sold this year in the UK alone up to 11.
According to Steve Brammer, Glaston’s sales manager for the UK and Ireland, the outstanding sales success of the Glaston tempering range, and the FC500 in particular, is a reflection of the latest trends in glass processing in the UK and other global markets.
“We’re seeing a strong demand from glass processors to invest in their equipment to ensure that they can deliver a higher quality end product and also temper larger glass sizes. Requirements have been evolving rapidly, and glass producers are seeing the business potential in providing customers with advanced glass product performance,” he says.
The main drivers for UK glass processors are the increasing demand for higher quality, larger sizes, an ever greater variety of glass types, reduced environmental impact and much lower energy consumption, as well as the expansion into more sophisticated and advanced glass products.
“What we are also seeing is that the average size of new furnace is increasing dramatically, with 8 out of the 11 furnaces sold being a 2800 mm x 6000 mm bed size or larger,” Steve highlights.
The beauty of the FC500 concept is that the quality of the glass being produced remains constant, regardless of whether the customer is processing 4 mm domestic window sizes or beds full of large high performance glass types. Switching from one type of product to another is seamless. The furnace easily delivers the levels of flexibility required by modern glass processors.
Launched in 2011, the Glaston FC500 tempering furnace offers customers a way to increase production capacity by up to 40% while decreasing energy consumption by 30%. The furnace also allows glass processors to expand into new areas, including tempering Low-E glass, which they may not have been able to do with their existing lines.