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Crystals and Crystal Growth

Crystals and Crystal Growth

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Published by lucian

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Published by: lucian on Apr 08, 2010
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05/12/2014

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Crystals and crystal growth
-an introductory survey-The regular surface geometry and the shiny and often colorful appearance have madecrystals from the mineral kingdom fascinating objects for everybody. Natural crystalshave often been formed at relatively low temperatures by crystallization from solutions,sometimes in the course of hundreds and thousands of years. Somenatural crystals:
 
CrystalsPolished FluoriteAngelsChrysanthemumStoneCrystal Singing BowlsCelestite ClustersPolished flat stonesJewellery
Black Tourmaline
 
GreenTourmaline
 
GoldenTopazPink Tourmaline
 
 
 
Clear Quartz Crystal Points Top Grade Uruguayan Amethyst ClustersSnowflake photography
 
 Nowadays, crystals are produced artificially to satisfy the needs of science, technologyand jewelry. The ability to grow high quality crystals has become an essential criteria for the competitiveness of nations.Crystals are solids in which the elementary building blocks, the atoms, are arrangedregularly in a space lattice with specific geometrical symmetry elements. There is noideal atomic lattice in nature, and it would be not very useful either. Certainimperfections of the chemical and structural atomic arrangement are essential for theusefulness and value of crystals.The artificial crystal kingdom can be divided intothree sectors:-Technical crystalsbelong to one of the two big sectors of the single crystal market. Theyare widely present, often in hidden form. We eat crystals (salt, sugar), we use crystals asclocks in watches and computers (quartz), for information processing and storage(silicon), for switching TV-sets (gallium arsenide), for telecommunication (galliumarsenide) and for transport (turbine blades from nickel-aluminum compounds). Huge saltcrystals (CaF2) are used as UV-light lenses in the submicron structuring during electronicdevice fabrication.-Jewelleryforms the second big sector of the single crystal market.- The market of research crystalsis relatively small but extremely diversified. Artificialresearch crystals of high quality are the basis of solid state research activities. Naturalcrystals are normally not sufficiently qualified for research purposes. Crystals are alsorequired for modern light and particle scattering and diffraction instruments asmonochromators and detectors. A broad range of geometrically well prepared crystals isrequired for thin film, catalysis and electrochemical studies.Someartificial crystals:

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