Glass and Electromagnetic Eavesdropping Protection



Glass is a key component in building design. Benefits of utilizing Insulating Glass Units (IGUs) within a building facade are well understood, including occupant health and superior aesthetics compared to brick and masonry options. Advances in Low-E coating technology have added to these benefits in terms of improved energy efficiency. However, utilizing glass for cyber security is often less understood. Intercepting electronic information, such as cell phone conversations or wireless data, is especially concerning when both have become a huge part of everyday life. The obvious first level of protection is to secure the wireless or cellular network itself; however, this does not stop potential criminals from still seeing the network exists or using infrared radiation (IR) technology to view the exact locations of electronic devices within a building. Utilizing glass with radio frequency (RF) shielding and IR blocking capabilities can make the network invisible by keeping the wireless data contained within the building facade while preventing any heat-sensing devices from penetrating through. Prior to 2014, there was no standard method to test the effectiveness of glass used for the purpose of electronic eavesdropping protection. In 2014, ASTM F3057-14 Standard Test Method for Electromagnetic Shielding Effectiveness of Glazings was developed to focus on accurately comparing the shielding effectiveness of glass products. Based on this test method, it has been found that incorporating a Fluorine-doped Tin Oxide (FTO) conductive coating on the inboard of an IGU provides better protection from electronic eavesdropping than the addition of a film or traditional Low-E coating without compromising on IR transmission performance or aesthetics.




As wirelessly transmitted data has become widespread, the need to protect this data has also increased. Even secured networks aren’t 100% foolproof as electronic eavesdroppers commonly hack into major business

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Prior to the development of the ASTM F3057-14 test method in 2014, a modified version of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 299 Standard Method for Measuring the Effectiveness

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Data – Infrared Transmission

Table 3 shows the results from the ASTM E903 IR Transmission test at 800nm wavelength. The first three samples show the effect that a thicker substrate has

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While the IEEE 299 test protocol has several important differences when compared to the ASTM F3057-14 test, the attenuation results from each method yields similar results. In both tests, the

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