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Unbreakable window glass (also known as shatterproof glass) is proclaimed to be the original bulletproof glass. It gets its reputation as “unbreakable” due to the unique way it crumbles upon impact, collapsing into small, harmless pebbles instead of sharp, cutting pieces. Today, this type of security glass pales in comparison when tested against modern ballistic glass (meaning: glass that can stand up to a speeding projectile). In short: ballistic glass will stop a bullet, and unbreakable glass will not.
What is Shatterproof Glass?
Shatterproof glass is created by pressing a layer of resin in between two pieces of glass (a process referred to as lamination). The resin will continue to hold the layers of glass together, even when met with extreme force, resulting in the break-proof glass phenomenon. After being struck by a projectile, a shatterproof window will crumble into dull pebbles instead of dangerous shards.
“These days, this is an alternative product for people who aren’t facing a ballistic threat, but still need to keep people out and keep their window intact,” said Total Security Solutions CEO Jim Richards. While unbreakable window glass won’t stop a bullet, its ability to resist shattering may be the difference between life and death for a bystander during a violent impact or weather event.
Shatter-Resistant Glass Uses
The unique properties of unbreakable glass allow it to act as a strong deterrent against theft and forced entry, protecting both your physical property and employees from harm. It is most often installed in place of traditional glass windows or doors in spaces such as office buildings, storefronts, and similar high-traffic areas that may be at risk of suffering from an extreme weather event or criminal attack. That being said – the most secure solution when it comes to guaranteeing your team’s safety is ballistic glass.
Types of Ballistic Glass
Ballistic glass will always outperform unbreakable glass when faced with a speeding projectile – but not all ballistic glass is the same. There are eight levels of bullet resistance as established by the Underwriter’s Laboratory, and a piece of glass must be able to stop a certain number of shots from a specific weapon in order to pass each level. Additionally, bullet-resistant glass is often not even glass at all, consisting of clear acrylic, polycarbonate, or glass-clad polycarbonate materials. Check out this guide to learn more about the levels of ballistic glass and its uses in different industries.