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Glass-aluminium bonded joints,
Testing, comparing and designing for the All Transparent Pavilion

S.A.J. de Richemont1, F.A. Veer2
1 TNO Building and Construction Research, Delft, the Netherlands
2 Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands

This article presents the research to the bonded joints of the All Transparent Pavilion (ATP), an experimental project built in November 2004 at the faculty of Architecture in Delft. The pavilion is designed to use structural glass elements, bonded with Delo Photobond GB 368, a photo-catalytic transparent adhesive. To avoid bonding on-site and to allow disassembly, the joints were designed as aluminium pieces, bonded to the glass.
Some joints of the ATP failed during construction. The tolerances for assembling the two aluminium parts were too small, and joints had to be forced together. The Delo Company suggested an alternative adhesive: The GB 350, a rubber modified version and supposedly tougher version of the GB 368.
The research consisted of two parts: First, the mechanical behaviour of GB 368 and GB 350 were compared, and secondly designing an improved solution for the glass-aluminium bonded joint between the main beam and purlin. This article focuses on the mechanical behaviour of GB 368 and GB 350.
Three types of tests were performed: tensile tests, low cycle fatigue tests and fracture toughness tests. Results show that both adhesives have low damage tolerance and are therefore sensitive to damage during assembly. Although the GB 350 was recommended by the Delo company because it was designed to resist impact loads, results show the improvement is not enough. The GB 350 is better in static tests, but the fatigue tests show great scatter and the fracture tests show peeling of the adhesive from the adherent surface. Given this, the GB 350 should be more susceptible to corrosion.

Key words: Glass, adhesives, joints