Fiberglass(or fiber glass, glass fiber) is a fibrous silicate glass(silica, SiO2, quartz) material, with varying amounts of other oxides of calcium, magnesium, and sometimes boron. Fiberglass is a strong lightweight material, chemical and heat resistant. Common applications of fiberglass include: thermal insulation and seal, electrical insulation, mechanical reinforcement(glass-reinforced plastic GRP or GFRP) etc.
Silicate (SiO2) glass is amorphous. It’s molecule structure does not have long-range order, but short-range order of a tetrahedral arrangement of O and Si atoms. For example, E glass consists more than 50% of SiO2. SiO2 and B2O3 are the predominant network formers. BaO acts as a network modifier and Al2O3 is a glass network intermediate, which together with BaO has the capacity to form a network.
Common types of fiberglass include:
E-glass which is alumino-borosilicate glass with less than 1% alkali oxides. This is the most commonly used fiberglass for thermal insulation and seal, electrical insulation and GRP/GFRP.
C-glass is alkali-lime glass with high boron oxide content. C-glass is also a commonly used fiberglass for thermal insulation and seal.
S-glass is alumino silicate glass without CaO but with high MgO content. S-glass has high tensile strength It is less commonly used in thermal insulation and seal applications
Less Commonly used fiberglass type:
A-glass: Alkali-lime glass with little or no boron oxide.
E-CR-glass: Electrical/Chemical Resistance; alumino-lime silicate with less than 1% alkali oxides, with high acid resistance.
D-glass: Borosilicate glass, named for its low Dielectric constant.
R-glass: Alumino silicate glass without MgO and CaO with high mechanical requirements as Reinforcement.