Container glass is omnipresent and reuse can be observed all around the world. The Wat Pa Maha Chedi Kaew Temple in Thailand is one of the most famous examples of reuse of glass bottles in a building structure. However, no calculation rules, methods or design procedures exist to validate glass bottle structures. Therefore, research is conducted in which glass bottles are tested and new configurations of glass bottles are made to design sustainable and load bearing structural elements.
From experimental testing at the American Glass Research institute in Delft it was concluded that the characteristic tensile strength of line-simulated bottles is equal to 27 MPa and the characteristic tensile strength of abraded bottles is equal to 20 MPa. Most bottles failed under a compression load of around 20 kN. However, when used in various stacked configurations with 6 bottles per level to obtain glass bottle columns, the failure load per bottle was reduced by 20-30%. From these experiments, design calculation formulas based on current standards are proposed, which also take the effect of load duration on the glass strength into account. It is shown that with the currently applied method small scale structures are feasible to be constructed with glass columns made from used glass bottles. Though, the application of reused glass bottles for large structural elements has promising potential.