US 2844998 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
H. B. VINCENT 2,844,998
July 29, 195s GLASS BUILDING BLOCK HAVING LIGHT-DIRECTING PROPERTIES mea mit. 21, 1954 INVENTOR` Hnlwaxn B VINCENT GLASS BUILDING BLOCK HAVING LIGHT- DIRECTING PROPERTIES Harvard B. Vincent, Toledo, Ohio, assigner to Owens- Illinois Glass Company, a corporation of Ohio Application October 21, 1954, Serial No. 463,729
1 Claim. (Cl. 88-60) This invention relates to improvements in transparent blocks of the type which have become increasingly popular in recent years for incorporation in the walls of buildings. More particularly, this invention relates to a hollow-glass block, of the type in which the internal faces of nited States Patent O ice f so as to effect a redirecting of light rays received directly the hollow block embody horizontal prismatic flutings for 2O deflecting incident sunlight in such manner as to cause a major part of the light to be directed throught the block and then upwardly toward the ceiling of the room where the block constitutes the outer wall.
lt is a characteristic of these so-called light-directing glass blocks that a minor portion of the light passing through fails to follow the desired direction, but is transmitted into the room in a horizontal or downwardly di- ,rected path, which is quite undesirable from the standpoint of producing glare in the eyes of the room occupants. Additionally, during the hot summer season, an s appreciable radiation of heat in the direction of the room occupants has been produced by the glass block wall constructions heretofore utilized.
lt is an object of this invention to provide an improved transparent block for buildings, or the like, wherein the interior or room-adjacent surface of the block is fabricated in such manner as to substantially eliminate the transmission of any stray light in a direction tending to produce glare in the eyes of the room occupants without substantially reducing the overall light transmission through the block.
A further object of this invention is to provide an improved light-directing type of glass block for buildings, or the like, wherein the overall heat emissivity of a wall formed of such block is substantially reduced, and, additionally, the direction of heat radiation produced by such wall is substantially entirely toward the ceiling of the room, thus increasing the comfort of the room occupants.
The specific nature of this invention, as well as other objects yand advantages thereof, will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description, taken in conjunction with the annexed sheets of drawings on which, by way of preferred example only, are illustrated two embodiments of this invention.
On the drawings:
Figure l is a vertical sectional view taken through a wall of a room constructed with transparent block embodying this invention.
Figure 2 is a view similar to lfigure l illustrating a modiied construction of light-directing block embodying this invention.
As shown on the drawings:
Numeral 10 indicates a transparent external wall of a room having a light-reflecting ceiling l1. Wall 10 is "formed by assembly of a plurality of individual glass block units 12 in conventional fashion, such as by joining such block units by interspersed layers of mortar 13.
Each block unit 12 has an outer face 12a, a pair of opposed internal faces 12b and 12C, and an inner or roomadjacent face 12d. While the outer face 12a is illustrated as being of planar configuration, it may conceivably be from the sun, indicated by the lines 14, so that such light will be directed to the ceiling 11 of the room, thus illuminating the interior of the room solely by reflected light and protecting the occupant from the direct glare of the sun.
It often happens that ground reflected or other stray light, indicated by the ray 15,` enters the transparent blocks 12 at such angle so that, despite the bending action of the internal prismatic surfaces 12e and 121i, the light tends to enter the room along a horizontal or downwardly directed path, so as to produce a glare effect on the eyes of the occupant.
In accordance with this invention, all such horizontal or downwardly directed stray light may be effectively eliminated by providing the entire room-facing surface of the interior or room-adjacent wall 12d of the transparent block with a series of vertically adjacent horizontally extending prismatic elements 12g. Each prism 12g thus denes an upwardly directed surface 12h and a downy wardly directed surface 12j. In accordance with this invention, each of the downwardly directed surfaces 12j is provided with an apaque coating i6 which substantially prevents the transmission of any light from such downwardly directed surfaces. Thus the stray light beam represented by the ray 15 cannot directly enter the room along either a horizontally or a downwardly directed path, but is reected or absorbed back through the walls of the block so that it finally enters the room, if at all, along an upwardly directed path, passing out through one of the upwardly directed surfaces 12h of the interior wall 12d.
As a further feature of this invention, the apaque coating 16 applied to such downwardly facing surfaces 12j is preferably formed of an unoxidized metal. For example, aluminum, silver, copper or other polished metals would provide a suitable coating. Such coating is not only opaque, but has a heat emissivity factor substantially lower than that of glass. Accordingly, the total heat radiated into the room by the downwardly facing surfaces 121 will be substantially reduced, and since most of the heat radiation felt by the occupants of the room emanates from such downwardly facing surfaces, ,it is clear that the comfort of the occupant, so far as heat radiation is concerned, will be substantially improved.
It will, of course, be apparent to those skilled in the art that any form of prismatic surfaces may be employed on the interior side ofthe glass block, so long as the downwardly facing portion of such surfaces are provided with the apaque coating. Thus, in Figure 2 there is illustrated a modification of this invention, wherein the configuration of the prismatic surfaces on the interior wall of the block is represented by generally arcuate utings, including upwardly facing portions 12k and downwardly facing portions 12m, to which the opaque coating 16 is again applied.
It will, of course, be understood that various details of construction or procedure may be modified through a wide range without departing from the principles of this invention, and it is, therefore, not the purpose to limit the patent granted hereon otherwise than necessitated by the scope of the appended claim.
A hollow glass building block comprising an outer face having an external surface adapted for exposure to a light source and an inner face interconnected to said outer face about the periphery of the block, said outer face and said inner face having opposed internal surfaces in spaced relationship on which are respectively formed a multiplicity of cooperating light-directing prisms, said inner face additionally having an' external room-facing surface similarly formed with light-directing prisms, said room-facing prisms providing alternate upwardly and downwardly facing surfaces adapted to cooperate with the prisms formed on the internal surfaces of both said faces to redirect substantially all of the incident light received upon the exterior surface of said outer face upwardly and outwardly from said inner face, a layer of opaque material covering said downwardly facing surface portions of said room-facing prisms to prevent outwardly and downwardly directed stray light transmission, said o paque material having a heat emssivity factor'"'substan tially lower than the heat emissivity factor of said glass block to diminish outwardly and downwardly directed solar heat radiation.
References Cited in the tle of this patent UNITED ST ATES PATENTS