The glass stairs we could walk was a long-time desire of architects. Just imagine how it would feel to have transparency below our feet.
Glass As The Material
The material properties make glass very interesting. It is interesting for both, decorative designs as well as construction ventures. Its aesthetics are indescribable and only visually possible. Until recently, the use of glass was reduced mainly to the decorative function of filling structures and shapes in the exterior and the interior. It used to be unthinkable to walk on a glass-made floor because the first step would be to break the glass and break down the stairs.
But now, it’s just a ridiculous situation that we have left in the past. With the advent of laminated glass, the idea of a glass staircase, glazed floors, and glass fences came to fruition. The requirements of glass elements in the interior are reduced not only to the aesthetics and transparency but also to the satisfaction of mechanical criteria. The most important among them are glass size, glass thickness, fixture method and static component. And not to forget the safety requirements that are primarily set.
For the first time, glass-transparent glass stairs were presented to the public at a glass fair in 2006. That was the time when one Italian company presented the largest machine that can process glass. The stairs they presented were exclusively made of glass. In many countries, this technology still needs to be perfected for quality implementation.
However, glass is already used in practice in combination with aluminium and stainless steel. Imagine climbing transparent stairs toward the upper floor of your home. You can look at what is currently happening below you, and it is quite an experience. With its construction transparency, glass makes a striking impression. Above all, it leaves an impression of space that is not limited and visually divided. This opens up a modern way of interior decoration. It is dominated by a unique space, connected by elements that do not conceal but emphasize its uniqueness and attraction.
Sometimes, it can be even easier if you already have the stairs. You can use professional help and transformed them into a glass staircase. According to Jarrodsstaircases, transforming your existing stairs into a stunning new staircase will create a long-lasting impression. Just by replacing your tired spindles and newels with the new glass ones can be a great transformation for your home.
A Laminated Glass Usage
For the construction of the staircase and stair glass fences, the laminated glass is used. This type of glass is composed of two or more glasses, interconnected by the foil of high tear resistance. It is produced at elevated temperature and high pressure. One or more layers of PVB (polyvinyl-butyral foil) foils are also placed between the glasses. They are usually translucent but can also be decorated in different colours.
Generally, laminated glass can be manufactured in various designs. This various types of glass of different dimensions and thicknesses can be joined. Therefore we have, a reflex glass, ornamental, self-cleaning, enamelled, screen printing or coloured glass. A combination of the three types of glass is recommended for the staircase.
The top glass is always toughened for safety reasons and protection against cuts. This is because in the case of refraction a small bead net with rounded edges is created. That allows high impact resistance and in the case of refraction, it won’t break into small parts. On the contrary, it remains in one piece. The foil protects the shattered opening during mechanical cracking. The upper toughened glass staircase has high impact resistance, higher bending strength and resistance to thermal loads.
The attractive and individual appearance of the glass staircase can be achieved very easily. The laminated glass is available in a wide range of colours from white and yellow to blue or green. Because of its attractive appearance, it can also be used to create a glass fence with a primarily decorative function.
From a construction point of view, a static calculation must be made. This is very important for safety reasons. This type of staircase is not only distinguished by its aesthetic properties, but also by its security character. That makes the glass staircase a solid and stable element of the interior. It is also a contemporary architectural challenge in both – construction and art.