We’re surrounded by glass. And when we say “we,” we’re not just talking about the workers here at our glass company. All of us are surrounded by glass pretty much every moment of the day, from the shower enclosures we begin the day in, to the cars we drive, to the screens we stare at all day and those we keep in our pockets. Oh, and unless you live and work in a fallout shelter, you’re constantly surrounded by glass in our climate-controlled homes and workspaces.
Glass has become so ubiquitous that we often ignore it. But sometimes it’s a good idea to step back and take a look at how amazing it is.
What’s In It?
Glass is made from a special form of sand called silicon dioxide, also called silica. It is typically mixed with boric acid and sodium carbonate (aka soda ash) and heated to 1500 degree Fahrenheit. At this point it becomes a liquid and can be poured into the desired shape.
Even though the sand is opaque, sand comes out clear. If you’ve every wondered how color glass is made, the answer might surprise you: metals. Cobalt makes glass blue, sulfur makes it yellow, iron makes it green, tin makes it white. A metal has been found to create every color.
Nature Made It First
Before humans ever made glass, nature made it first. Lighting is hot enough to create glass when it hits silica, and volcanic obsidian glass was widely used in the stone age to create sharp tools and weapons.
Humans Have Been Making It For 5,000 Years
Some form of glass has been made by humans for millennia. Archeological evidence suggests that the first human-made glass probably came about as a byproduct of metalwork. People would take these small pieces of glass and make beads from them. Intentionally-made glass making probably began in South Asia around 1700 BC.
No, It’s Not A Liquid
When you touch glass, it’s obviously a solid. Then someone you’re about to not like tells you “actually, it’s actually a liquid that simply flows over hundreds of years.” And they’d be wrong, it is certainly not a liquid. It is technically a non-crystalline amorphous solid, meaning that…oh, just read this.
If you clicked that link, you’ll learn something quickly: glass is special. It’s an amazing creation that has thousands of uses, and we want to help you make the most of it in your home or business. Contact Eagle Valley Glass today!