Quiet - quieter - Silent Gliss
Silent Gliss, the world's leading supplier of interior privacy and glare protection systems, has been relying on the technical expertise of Hydro aluminium for around 35 years. Philippe Benoit (Sales Director Switzerland- Hydro Extrusions) and Michel Frauchiger (CTO - Silent Gliss) tell us how the long-standing cooperation has developed and what the greatest challenges will be in the future.
In 1952, Swiss engineer Alexander Weber had the brilliant idea of combining nylon glides with aluminum tracks. The first silent curtain track system was created and thus the foundation of the traditional Swiss company Silent Gliss was laid.
The architects of silence
Thanks to state-of-the-art technology and the constant striving for precision, the Silent Gliss company develops high-quality and innovative custom-made shading systems in the upper market segment. But how do they succeed in making these products even quieter? "This is precisely the question we were asked”, says Philippe Benoit: "Normally Hydro - in the interest of the customer - always tries to design profiles as economically as possible. In the case of Silent Gliss, however, the aim is to optimize running surfaces and minimize the natural resonance of a profile cross-section. The latter can deliberately also lead to profiles having a thicker wall thickness, as this ensures that sliding noise is already optimally absorbed by the profile. Our contribution to engineering towards absolute silence, so to speak."
Innovation is something you cannot buy in the supermarket
The collaboration with Hydro takes place on two levels, Michel Frauchiger summarizes: "First, we are in constant exchange during the development phase. Here, it is important that Hydro is willing to push boundaries to meet Silent Gliss' demands and innovative ideas. We have to break new ground together with our suppliers, because the product doesn't exist yet, it still has to be invented. A good example of this is "Click-Profile".
In addition, the CTO praises the process reliability. Due to the consistently good quality of the product, complaints are very rare, as Philippe Benoit and Michel Frauchiger unanimously report. "This is a key point in which Hydro differentiates itself from the competition," Frauchiger emphasizes.
In addition to the rising cost factor, which will play an increasingly important role in the future, it is particularly important "that Hydro remains agile and proactively grasps and understands the customer's needs and works with them to find a solution, even sometimes a creative one. The years of collaboration play well into the cards here," concludes Philippe Benoit.
In addition to the factors mentioned by Philippe Benoit, Michel Frauchiger has two other key issues at the top of his agenda: Hydro's continuous expansion of its know-how in the aluminum sector and sustainability, in the sense of demonstrably short supply routes. "In fact, more and more architects are measuring and selecting their suppliers on the basis of environmentally relevant criteria," Frauchiger knows.
To be continued...