Common Misconceptions in the Liquid Glass Industry

Liquid Glass requires sophisticated tools and equipment to make.

Despite being an effective, versatile, and cost-saving product, Liquid Glass can be developed using typical laboratory tools and procedures. Though some companies include the use of “clean rooms”, glass reactors and proprietary scientific methods in the manufacturing descriptions of their technology, these are guise to confuse the client with misunderstanding and superfluous fees.

Significant training is needed in order to apply Liquid Glass.

The simplicity of Liquid Glass allows for users to apply it without significant, prior training. Many companies that offer this technology frequently include ease of application in descriptions of their product, but subsequently require clients to pay for application training. SiO2 International does not charge clients for such training as our products are easy to apply.

This technology is self-cleaning.

Whether or not Liquid Glass coatings are self-cleaning depends on how a company or client defines “self-cleaning.” Typically, this term is defined by the method by which the coating resists adherent dirt and other particles. Hydrophilic coatings allow water to adhere and “purge” the surface, removing dirt in the process, leaving it cleaner. Hydrophobic coatings repel water where droplets pick up dirt removing it from the surface. Photocatalytic materials have also been introduced where organic matter is chemically broken down and dispersed but a true self cleaning surface where no outside element like water is not needed is still coming.

This technology imparts superphobicity onto glass surfaces.

This is a grossly overused term. To offer a surface true superhydrophobicity, a water droplet contact angle of ≥150º would need to be met. While these contact angles can be achieved in porous materials (like textile, stone, etc.), a superhydrophobic glass coating would sacrifice other desired surface characteristics (example: glass would become opaque as the surface topography would need to change).

Toxic solvents are needed to manufacture Liquid Glass coatings.

As a rule, solvents are easy to use, which is why many companies offer strong, virulent products. SiO2 International offers water-based products and our solvent of choice is of medical grade and considered safe.

The Liquid Glass industry offers permanent coating products.

Use of the word “permanent” in this context is misleading. A few companies offer a permanent anti-graffiti coating that allows for 10 cleanings only. True permanence - i.e. a coating that stays attached and performs for the life of the surface - would need to be left in a vacuum indefinitely so is not available with any technology.

Liquid Glass uses naturally derived molecules of silicon dioxide.

Silicon dioxide (SiO2) is the principal ingredient used in our formulations but in some cases, these molecules are purposely derived. SiO2 is necessary in the production of glass and in any format, safe to human health and the environment

Anti-fouling marine coating.

The mechanics necessary to maintain effectiveness under water dictate that a thicker coating of similar materials would last longer than an ultra thin coating. But advances in new materials will allow these products to come to market in the future.

Liquid Glass is nanoparticle free.

Despite being “engineered” nanoparticle free, Liquid Glass uses safe molecules of silicon dioxide that are themselves, particles of matter. Like any molecule, it can be measured using the nano scale but most often measured using ångströms (.01nm)

The company selling Liquid Glass owns the IP (intellectual property).

This is very unlikely, as most companies in this industry are distributors or sub-distributors rather than developers of the technology itself. SiO2 International, on the other hand, develops and manufacturers its own technology and offers tours of our labs and manufacturing site to interested parties. Many distributors will state they own their own formulations and if you suspect otherwise, simply ask them to tour their facilities.

Liquid Glass technology is patented.

Most patents are developed to protect intellectual property but there is little reason to protect a technology that cannot be copied which is the case of Liquid Glass. One distributor, Nanopool, has patents to certain processes that use their supplier’s product but not the IP itself i.e. treatment of plants. SiO2 International has copies of all industry’s patents for your review.

Liquid Glass was invented in Germany.

While the Liquid Glass industry was born at The Leibniz Institute for New Materials, Saarbrüken, Germany, it was a Turkish scientist who invented the very first variant to protect against graffiti.

The term “Liquid Glass” is an official, licensed product name.

This is untrue. The only parties that use this term are vendors and distributors that use it in their advertising. The true developers refer to the Technology as “ultra thin film” or “ultra thin layering”. SiO2 International uses the term because it is new to North America and catchy but usually refer to our SiO2 Technology as “ultra thin film”.

Liquid Glass is expensive.

This is not true with SiO2 International. Most companies that offer smaller quantities in bottles are distributors and must purchase minimum quantities from their suppliers. They charge very high prices even for their samples. SiO2 International develops and manufactures its own products which allows us to control costs and offer free samples.