World’s first spiral glass staircase from Asahi Glass makes visitors feel as if they are walking in the air

Asahi Glass has completed the world’s first spiral glass staircase using a suspension structure. The transparent, airy glass steps, which are suspended in spirals, look as if they are floating in the air. This unique innovation is available at AGC studio, which offers hands-on experience of AGC’s various glass products. Glass staircases have been used in numerous facilities, but many of them have glass plates at the sides of the steps to support the entire structure. Eliminating the side glass plates could enhance the transparency of a glass staircase; however, this could not be achieved until now because of the difficulty in fixing glass steps without side plates.

The durability and other aspects of this structure have been tested and verified using a full-size model based on precise structural calculations. Incorporating the unique characteristics of glass, excellent light transmission and structural strength, the staircase makes visitors feel as if they are walking in the air. In addition, AGC’s Leoflex is used for the curved handrails of the staircase, which is the first case that the chemically strengthened specialty glass is used as a building material. With Leoflex, a thin but strong and crack-resistant glass, AGC has created safe, lightweight and transparent staircase rails. Taking advantage of its thinness and flexibility, Leoflex can be installed without any prior bending work. The curved handrails were created simply by bending two sheets of flat glass laminated together.

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