Belgian flat glass producer AGC Glass Europe celebrated the 120th anniversary of its Boussois float glass plant in northern France.

The ceremony took place on Friday, 1st June. Delegates included the District Sub-Prefect Alexander Grimaud, politicians, press and glass specialists. A 180 x 40 cm float line cake was baked to mark the occasion.

The float glass plant consists of two float lines and has a total capacity of more than 1,300 tonnes per day. It is operated by 223 employees and specialises in clear glass production (Planibel Clearlite) and glass with a high light transmission (Planibel Clearvision) for the construction and indoor furnishings industries.

It has also recently started to produce XXL glass sheets with an outsize length of 16 metres (compared with the industry standard of 6 metres) for prestige architectural projects.

Boussois has previously demonstrated its innovative capabilities in 2008 when it was the first in the world to introduce oxycombustion into its process, with the combustion gas pre-heated by heat recovered from the flue gases. This system led to a reduction in energy consumption by around 25% along with significant reductions in atmospheric emissions: 15% less carbon dioxide (CO2), 38% less sulphur dioxide (SO2) and 83% less nitrogen oxides (NOx), making it one of the most ecological in the world.

Instead of being fed with ordinary air, the furnace operates with 100% pure oxygen. Since ordinary air contains only 20% oxygen and 80% nitrogen, oxycombustion prevents burning nitrogen, which only wastes energy and does not contribute to the process.

Pictured: AGC Glass team at the recent ceremony in honour of the plant Boussois' 120thanniversary