They could easily break car windows and any tempered glass.
Cars are probably among the easiest targets for thieves. You’re at risk whenever you park your car in an area that’s not secured. Then again, even if it is, determined criminals will find a way to outwit security personnel. Indeed, that’s what some car thieves have accomplished with their latest modus — wherein they use tiny ceramic stones to break car windows.
Apparently, car thieves love to use ceramic stones because it enables them to break into the car without much effort.
The ceramic stones are actually ceramic shards that come from spark plugs. These broken pieces are what you get when you smash the ceramic part of the spark plug.
An article on The American Ceramic Society‘s website explains,
“The hard ceramic fragments of broken spark plugs are great at breaking tempered glass. The reason is that the small, sharp, and hard ceramic fragments induce scratches that pierce through the residual stresses of the glass. Once the crack gets started, it quickly spreads.”
According to a National Geographic feature, it so happens that the glass used for the side windows of most vehicles “is manufactured with an extremely high surface compressive stress and high internal tensile stress.” The side windows’ glass is strong and durable. However, it could also shatter into thousands of tiny pieces once there’s a broken spot. Windshields, on the other hand, are generally made of laminated safety glass, so ceramic stones won’t work on them.
National Geographic went on to note:
“When thrown with moderate speed at a side window, a sharp shard of the exceptionally hard aluminium oxide ceramic used in spark plugs focuses the impact energy into a small enough area without blunting to initiate cracking, releasing the internal energy and shattering the glass.”
Then again, these ceramic stones — which could also come from other ceramic products — can also be used for good. For example, you could be locked out of your car and need to get inside to take something that could save your life such as medicine. There may also be times when there’s a child or an incapacitated person inside a car. Plus, the scariest scenario of all: The car could be on fire and someone is locked inside.
These cases of “extreme emergency” may also include kids or pets getting locked inside the car. These are the times when you’d be thankful that there’s a relatively easy way to break into a car without calling in experts.
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