Throughout all of 2014, Glaston sold 11 furnaces in the UK, one of which is the largest FC500 ever made.

The latest contract signed in early December with European Glass Group is for two more FC500 lines, including the biggest FC500 furnace that Glaston has sold to date.

According to Steve Brammer, Glaston's sales manager for the UK and Ireland, the sales success of the Glaston tempering range, and the FC500 in particular, is a reflection of the latest trends in glass processing in the UK and other global markets.

"We're seeing a strong demand from glass processors to invest in their equipment to ensure that they can deliver a higher quality end product and also temper larger glass sizes.

“Requirements have been evolving rapidly, and glass producers are seeing the business potential in providing customers with advanced glass product performance," he said.

"What we are also seeing is that the average size of new furnace is increasing dramatically, with 8 out of the 11 furnaces sold being a 2800 mm x 6000 mm bed size or larger.”

The main drivers for UK glass processors are the increasing demand for higher quality, larger sizes, an ever greater variety of glass types, reduced environmental impact and much lower energy consumption, as well as the expansion into more sophisticated and advanced glass products.

The FC500 concept is that the quality of the glass being produced remains constant, regardless of whether the customer is processing 4mm domestic window sizes or beds full of large high performance glass types.