I am sure we have all enjoyed a day in a large public aquarium. But have you wondered how these glasses withstand all the pressure of the water? What the standard thickness of glass needed for a large aquarium? In this article, you will learn if it is purely glass used in large aquariums and how thick aquarium glass is. You will also learn the standard glass thickness for aquariums depending on the size.
Does Glass Thickness Matter?
Aquarium hobbyists and even engineers will answer yes. Glass thickness is the thing that can withstand the pressure, depending on the depth of the aquarium, and keep the water from breaking or shattering the glass. Honestly, glass is too brittle, so it is not suitable for a very large aquarium, and it can refract too much light, which results in distorting the view.
Is It Glass?
So, as mentioned, glass is too brittle to withhold water pressure in deep aquariums. What are these glass windows under the aquariums made of then? Large aquariums use what is called polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA), or simply acrylic, like Plexiglass or Lucite. The reason why acrylic is used is that it is half the density of glass and has more tensile strength, meaning it can withstand greater tension than pure glass. Not only that, but acrylic can flex and refracts less, allowing your aquarium window to be thinner and have a clearer view.
Glass Thickness Calculator
Due to the various factors you need to consider in building an aquarium, the perfect way to solve this problem, especially on finding the perfect glass thickness, is a glass thickness calculator. You can find one on the internet. All you have to do is input the measurements (the length, the width, and the height) of the aquarium you are planning to build, and input the standard safety factor, which is between 2.8 and 3.8, and it will calculate the standard glass thickness you need. It will make it easier to answer the question: “How thick is aquarium glass?”
What is the Standard Aquarium Glass Thickness
So, is there a standard aquarium glass thickness? How thick is aquarium glass? Well, as mentioned, it depends on the size of your aquarium. The most common and the safest answer will be 1/2 inch of glass.
However, to make things easier for you, I will be providing you with a simple guide on glass thickness for different aquarium sizes. Here is the simple guide:
- 6mm is 1/4 inch
- 10mm is 3/8 inch
- 12mm is 1/2 inch
Now that it is out of the way, here are some of the sizes, all measured in inches based on length, width, and height (L x W x H):
- Standard aquarium:
- 24in x12in x15in will need 4mm-thick glass
- For 36 inches in length aquariums:
- 36in x 15in x 18in will need 6mm-thick glass
- 36in x 24in x 24in will need 10mm-thick glass
- 36in x 30in x 30in will need 12mm-thick glass
- For 48 inches in length aquariums:
- 48in x 18in x 20in will need 6mm-thick glass
- 48in x 24in x 28in will need 10mm-thick glass
- 48in x 30in x 30in will need 12mm-thick glass
- For 60 inches in length aquariums:
- 60in x 18in x 20in will need 6mm-thick glass
- 60in x 24in x 28in will need 10mm-thick glass
- 60in x 30in x 30in will need 12mm-thick glass
- For 72 inches in length aquariums:
- 72in x 18in x 20in will need 6mm-thick glass
- 72in x 24in x 28in will need 10mm-thick glass
- 72in x 30in x 30in will need 12mm-thick glass
- For 84 inches in length aquariums:
- 84in x 24in x 28in will need 10mm-thick glass
- 84in x 30in x 30in will need 12mm-thick glass
- For 96 inches in length aquariums:
- 96in x 24in x 28in will need 10mm-thick glass
- 96in x 30in x 30in will need 12mm-thick glass
Those are just some of the many calculations or guides that can help you determine how thick aquarium glass is. Very complicated, right? But at least you now have this simple guide to help you with aquarium glass thickness.
Now you know the answer to the question: “How thick is aquarium glass?” It wasn’t very easy, but hopefully, this article has simplified things for you, and now, the one thing left to do now is to apply what you have learned!
Remember that you can always use a glass thickness calculator to make things less problematic. Just familiarize yourself with the measurements used and the safety factor standards. Once you master these, building an aquarium will be easy-peasy for you. Know more about aquariums.