Manufacture and reuse
Millions of glass bottles are created worldwide every day. It is a highly mechanized process, and bottles in use today are no longer hand blown as they were in the past.
A glass bottle is 100% recyclable with many new bottles containing glass which was created over 20 years ago. Less energy is used in recycling a glass bottle than creating the glass from raw materials, helping the environment. In 2012, 96% of the glass bottles sold in Switzerland were recycled.
Glass bottle manufacturing takes place over several stages. To briefly outline the processes from beginning to end: raw material, melting, forming, annealing, physical inspection, machine & laser inspection, secondary physical inspection, quality control, and finally packing.
Glass bottles are sometimes reinforced through lamination. Laminated safety glass is made by coating a glass surface with a layer of plastic. When a standard glass bottle is dropped, the glass breaks and scatters. When a laminated bottle is dropped, the glass still breaks but the layer of plastic remains intact, keeping the glass pieces together.
Once made, bottles may suffer from internal stresses as a result of unequal, or too rapid cooling. An annealing oven, or 'lehr' is used to cool glass containers slowly to prevent stress and make the bottle stronger. When a glass bottle filled with liquid is dropped or subjected to shock, the water hammer effect may cause hydrodynamic stress, breaking the bottle.
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- Brandt RC; Tressler RE (1994). Fractography of Glass. Plenum Press. ISBN 0-306-44880-7.
- Soroka, W, "Fundamentals of Packaging Technology", IoPP, 2002, ISBN 1-930268-25-4
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- Antique Bottles collectors/traders
- North American Soda and Beer Bottles
- North American Food and Drug Bottles
- Glass Manufacturer's marks & logos seen on Antique & Modern Bottles and other Glassware (primarily American)