A £36 million coater making energy efficient glass in the UK has become fully operational.

The coater at the Cowley Hill facility, St Helens, UK is owned by the NSG group, which produces Pilkington glass.

The coater enables ultra-thin special coatings to be applied to glass, creating energy-saving architectural glass products.

Having started production in November 2012, the line is now fully operational and currently producing Pilkington K Glass S glass at a rate equivalent to 4 million m2 per year.

It has created 50 new jobs and is expected to make a major contribution to the UK’s green economy, helping to support the UK Government’s energy efficiency programme, the Green Deal, which launched on January 28.

UK Energy and Climate Change Minister Gregory Barker visited the plant as full production got underway. The facility received £5 million in support from the Government as a part of the Regional Growth Fund.

"Energy efficient glazing has an important role to play in helping reduce energy bills going forward and the Green Deal will allow people to upgrade their homes with new glazing and pay for some or all of the work done through savings on their bill," Barker said.

"So it’s great to know that a significant volume of the glass required to make our homes and buildings warmer and more efficient can be made in the North West."

The facility will soon begin producing two more energy efficient glass treatments: the Pilkington Optitherm and the Pilkington Suncool.

In establishing the treatment centre, NSG said it had a UK presence in developing energy efficient glass as the Green Deal gets underway.

"The new coater is undoubtedly a significant investment and one that the company and the wider St Helens community can certainly be proud of. The Minister’s visit to the facility brings home its significance," said Pilkington operations director Gary Charlton.