Wind Load

How can wind damage architectural glass? The key to prevention comes early in the design stage.

Wind load is the result of wind creating pressure and suction that the glass must resist. The wind load on a specific building depends on that building’s height, shape, relationship to surrounding buildings and terrain, along with local wind speeds and the duration of gusts.

Center deflection is a major consideration in wind load and should be addressed in the early phases of design. Excessive center deflection can result in edge pull out, distortion of reflected images and possible contact between glass and interior components, such as room dividers and window blinds.

Insulating Glass
The effects of wind on insulating glass units are, in many cases, complex and require a computer-assisted wind load analysis to adequately consider some of the variables. Design professionals must take into account the following variables:

  • Air space expansion and contraction caused by the effects of changing temperatures, barometric pressure, altitude and differences in weathering in the #1 and #2 surfaces
  • Asymmetrical loading, i.e., lites of varying thickness
  • Condition of edges (free, bonded or fixed)
  • Variation in sight line or air space width
  • Thermal stress

These variables must be considered carefully because they can dramatically alter the data taken from a standard wind load chart.

Guardian follows the current EN 1991-1…4NA, DIN 18008 (Germany) and SIA 261 (Switzerland).

Contact Guardian’s Technical Advisory Center for assistance with glass static analysis.