Glass wool manufacturing; a fascinating process


Ever wonder where glass wool comes from? Obviously not from glass sheep, right? The process involved in glass wool manufacturing is a fascinating one. Recycled glass and natural sand are fused with ash, borax, and limestone by heating them to 1450 degrees Celsius. The resulting glass is then converted into fibers.

This is generally accomplished by using a technique quite similar to making cotton candy. The super heated glass is pushed through a fine mesh using centripetal force which is the force that keeps a body moving at a uniform speed along a circular path. This is usually the force behind circular motion. The glass stretches out into long fibers that cool upon contact with the air. While the fibers are airborne, they get sprayed with resin that acts as a bonding agent to keep the glass fibers together and strong.

Next the fibers get sucked into a forming hood where they are channeled into one continuous piece of insulation. It then drops onto a conveyor and runs through an oven operating at two hundred and seventy degrees Celsius to cure the resin. Once out of the oven, the insulation is cut to the desired length then either rolled or stacked depending on a company’s requirements. The glass wool gets compressed to a mere fraction of  its original size and slid into packaging. Since it harbors millions of air pockets, glass wool insulation bounces back into shape very well. Once packaged, the insulation is sent to stores for sale.

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