This example of glass production from the Corning Museum of Glass clearly shows the large scale of some forms of Continuous Production
Machines operate at tremendous speeds, turning out tableware, bottles, cook-ware, laboratory-ware, tumblers, jars, window glass, auto headlight lenses, television tubes, and other products that we take for granted. Hub and Ribbon machines are provided with huge amounts of melted glass from tanks like the one illustrated here.
The raw materials for glass are many. Nearly every known element has been used at one time or another in the manufacture of glass. Silica sand is the principal ingredient and is combined with many other ingredients. The quality of the glass depends on how pure the original ingredients were.
All materials are crushed and granulated to nearly uniform particle size, stored in batch towers, and fed into the melt tank in carefully measured amounts. Recycled glass, called cullet, is added to every batch.
Temperatures up to 1600° C melt the batch and convert it into glass. The newly melted glass flows slowly toward the front, or the working end of the tank, where the "continuous feed" manufacturing machines are located. There, at the working end, the glass is cooled to a temperature which is suitable for forming the product. Some continuous tanks may produce 700,000 pounds of glass, or more.