The causes for the frequent occurrence of fractures and failures of parts and components made of silicate glass are sometimes very diverse. Often, after a certain accumulation of fracture events of a component, the question of the causes for the insufficient mechanical strength increasingly comes into focus. If the causes of failure are not obviously identifiable, judiciously chosen analytical methods can help to narrow down the relevant critical conditions. The properties of the material, its particular brittleness, the machining and process steps during manufacture, but also the conditions of use have an influence on strength.

In this paper, methods are presented that can be used to identify features through analyses of glass damage that provide access to causes of undesired component failure. These can be interpreted using material knowledge and can help improve material quality. Selected practical examples will be used to illustrate possibilities.