Commercial and Residential Glass Installer and Manufacturer Resource

Glass Clad Polycarbonate: The Ultimate in Safety

Mar 11, 2024 12:11:34 PM / by Greg Martell

tested bullet resistant glass clad polycarbonate

Are your customers on the lookout for a versatile, tough glass option that also offers peace of mind

Glass clad polycarbonates fit that bill perfectly. Its composition, where a strong polycarbonate layer is combined with glass, offers superior protection compared to traditional glass.

When compared to glass-only products, these types of glass solutions are also incredibly durable and long-lasting, as they can withstand harsh conditions and rugged environments without losing their clarity over time. 

Not only does it provide the ultimate solution in safety, but it also adds unparalleled aesthetic appeal, making it an excellent investment for your business and your customers.

Let’s dig into the details of when, where, and why you should be using glass clad polycarbonate in your customers’ projects.


What is Glass Clad Polycarbonate?

Glass clad polycarbonate is a composite material that combines the properties of polycarbonate and glass. Sometimes called bulletproof glass or ballistic glass, it consists of layers of polycarbonate and glass laminated together to create a single sheet of material. 

The polycarbonate layer provides impact resistance and flexibility, while the glass layer adds hardness, optical clarity, and additional strength.

During the fabrication process, the layers are bonded together using specialized adhesives and lamination techniques. This fusion creates a robust and durable material.

How Does Bulletproof Glass Work?

You might wonder, "How does bulletproof glass work?" The secret lies in its layered structure. When something strikes glass clad polycarbonate, the outer glass layer spreads the impact over a larger area while the inner polycarbonate layer absorbs the energy, preventing penetration. This combination of spreading and absorbing impact energy is what makes glass clad polycarbonate an effective barrier against bullets, offering superior protection in high-risk situations.

During the fabrication process, the layers are bonded together using specialized adhesives and lamination techniques. This fusion creates a robust and durable material, capable of withstanding not just bullets but also blunt force impacts, making it an ideal choice for a variety of security applications.


Why Choose Glass Clad Polycarb?

Since it harnesses the strength and impact resistance of polycarbonate while benefiting from the hardness and optical clarity of glass, glass clad polycarbonate is the pinnacle of glass options for safety.

Customers may prefer glass clad polycarbonate over regular glass for several reasons:

  • Enhanced security
  • Bullet resistance
  • Lighter weight
  • Durability
  • Customization
  • Peace of mind


Enhanced Security

Glass clad polycarbonate offers superior security capabilities compared to regular glass. 

Its combination of impact-resistant polycarbonate and glass layers provides increased resistance against physical attacks, making it an ideal choice for high-security environments such as jails, government buildings, and hotels.


Bullet Resistance 

Can bulletproof glass be broken? Some can, but glass clad polycarbonate is designed to provide effective bullet resistance. It can withstand various calibers of bullets, depending on the thickness and specific requirements of the application. 

This feature makes it indispensable in situations where protection against armed threats is essential.


Lighter Weight

Glass clad polycarbonate is lighter – thanks to the polycarbonate inner layer – than traditional all-glass armored materials while still delivering comparable protective performance. 

This lighter weight reduces the strain on supporting structures and makes it more convenient for installation and maintenance.



This composite material can withstand physical force and remain intact, ensuring long-lasting performance. Its strength is largely derived from its polycarbonate layer. 

How strong is polycarbonate? Polycarbonate is up to 250x stronger than regular glass. Because of its molecular makeup, it absorbs impacts without breaking.


Customization Options 

Glass clad polycarbonate can be fabricated to meet specific requirements. The thickness of the material can be tailored to achieve the desired level of security or bullet resistance. 

Additionally, features such as speak holes or pass-throughs can be incorporated during the fabrication process, allowing for customization based on the intended application.


Peace of Mind

Choosing glass clad polycarbonate provides customers with a sense of confidence and peace of mind knowing that they have invested in a robust, secure, and reliable solution. 


Glass Clad Polycarb: Applications, Thickness, & Cost

This safety glass option could be the solution your customers are looking for based on its:


Glass clad polycarbonate is primarily used in situations where security or bullet resistance is essential. It is commonly employed in locations such as:

  • Jails and Secure Holding Areas: In these environments, the paramount concern is preventing escapes and protecting both staff and inmates. Glass clad polycarbonate can withstand aggressive physical attacks, ensuring a high level of security.
  • Government Buildings: These structures often require enhanced security measures due to the sensitive nature of the activities conducted within. Glass clad polycarbonate helps safeguard against external threats while maintaining a clear and professional appearance.
  • Hotels: For luxury hotels, guest safety is a priority, but so is aesthetics. Glass clad polycarbonate provides a secure barrier against potential threats without compromising on the building’s visual appeal.
  • High-Security Facilities: This includes any facility that might be at risk of armed attacks or needs to protect valuable assets. Museums, banks, and data centers also benefit from the added security that glass clad polycarbonate provides.


Thickness & Use

Thickness depends on the intended use and level of protection required. 

For physical attack resistance, the material is typically around 9/16" thick or thicker. 

In the case of bullet resistance, the thickness may need to be closer to 1" or thicker, depending on the caliber of the weapon that needs to be stopped. Determining the appropriate thickness is crucial for ensuring the desired level of protection.



While glass clad polycarbonate offers lighter weight compared to all-glass laminated materials, it tends to be more expensive due to its specialized nature.

Consequently, glass clad polycarbonate is often chosen by municipalities, government agencies, and organizations with larger budgets.


Powerful Protection with Glass Clad Polycarbonate

If your customers are looking for a glass option that provides powerful protection and peace of mind, share with them the benefits and applications of glass clad polycarbonate.

It’s lighter than all-glass products, customizable, and durable, all while offering the ultimate solution in safety. While it may cost more than other safety glass products, it’s an investment that pays off. 

By opting for this advanced composite material, customers can ensure the safety and protection of their premises, personnel, and valuable assets.


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Note: This blog was originally published on June 27 2023 and was updated on March 11, 2024.

Written by Greg Martell