The newly reopened Chemical Heritage Museum in Philadelphia has been redesigned in an adaptive reuse of a historic bank building dating from 1865. Key to the design is a new mezzanine level walkway using glass made with DuPont™ SentryGlas®, to create a multi-level visitor experience.
Up to 100-times stiffer and five-times stronger than traditional interlayers, SentryGlas® allows for design of larger glass floor panels with reduced metal framing support, compared with past glass flooring designs.
“The challenge was creating a two-level visitor experience without blocking light from upper sections,” said principal architect Peter Saylor. “We wanted the glass to span bigger horizontal spaces to let more light through.”
Using SentryGlas® interlayers made the glass flooring stronger and enabled span widths of as much as 109 inches, using 2-inch-thick safety glass with excellent light pass-through. The flooring includes a textured walking surface for slip protection and light diffusion.
At the Chemical Heritage Museum, the visitor experience is heightened by the modern user of glass flooring and stairs that help display and educate. Advances in structural laminated glass design incorporating SentryGlas® have made that possible.