Polycarbonate vs Fiberglass


Fibreglass (or GRP) is a plastic material made of glass fibres that are reinforced with thermosetting resin.

Despite its resinous and filamented appearance, it has a transparency coefficient similar to that of polycarbonate, 0,86. It has a defect though that it becomes discoloured quickly and it is less elastic compared with polycarbonate, all due to the resin which forms it.

Like polycarbonate, fibreglass, if used for coverings, is also produced in sheets with a flat, corrugated wave, or box profile, and can be flat or curved, transparent or opaque. It is available in different widths and lengths and is sold in rolls, ready to put into operation. The physical aspect of GRP is not especially elegant and for this reason it is not often requested by private clients for DIY jobs nor by architects for design projects.

In summary we can say:

Advantages of fibreglass:

Resistance to chemical agents
Resistance to atmospheric agents
Good quality/price ratio

Disadvantages of fibreglass compared with polycarbonate:

Discolouration due to weather
Low elasticity
Low thermal capacity
Few possibilities for personalisation
Not particularly elegant

Advantages of polycarbonate:

Thermal and mechanical resistance
Toughness and Resistance
Load bearing and Wind pressure resistance
Lightness
Transparency
Ductility
Fire resistance
Thermal insulation
Recyclability and Ease of cleaning
Variable thickness


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