Structural Silicone Glazing: Life Expectancy of more than 50 Years?

Structural Silicone Glazing (SSG) is a curtain walling method that utilizes silicone sealants to adhere glass, ceramic, metal or composite panels to supporting framing members by means of a peripheral adhesive joint. In SSG curtain walls, silicone sealants serve not only as a weather seal, but also act as a structural bonding element, eliminating the need for exterior retainers and covers.

The paper discusses some essential findings of two recent research studies on the durability and service life of structural silicone glazing sealants and structures. The first study demonstrates, that specimens of a first generation 2-part silicone sealant taken from a SSG façade after 23+2 years of real life successfully passed the European ETAG002-1 performance criteria for residual strength.

In a second study, a new performance-based durability test method was developed in partnership with the Federal Institute for Materials Research Berlin/Germany (BAM). This method is based on simultaneously exposing system test specimens to artificial weathering and complex, multiaxial mechanical loadings. 2-part Structural Silicone sealants of the first and of the second generation where subjected to this test, which is considered to correspond to an anticipated service life of 50 years.