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Moldavite, a natural glass formed by meteorite impact, from Besednice, Bohemia
A modern greenhouse in Wisley Garden, England, made from float glass
Clear glass light bulb A glass is an amorphous (non-crystalline) solid material. Glasses are typically brittle, and often optically transparent. Glass is commonly used for windows, bottles, modern hard drives
any other means of preparation are considered. borosilicate glass. optics and optoelectronics material.1 Composition and properties 2. acrylic glass. biology and further scientific disciplines. sugar glass.2 Optical waveguides • • • • • 5 Modern glass art ○ 5. The term "glass" is.4 Sol-gel science/technology • • 3 Silica-free glasses 4 Physics of glass ○ ○ ○ 4. thermal insulator (glass wool). examples of glassy materials include soda-lime glass. now in modern Germany. The term glass developed in the late Roman Empire. In addition.1.1 Museums 6 See also 7 References 8 Bibliography 9 External links . Glass plays an essential role in science and industry. glass science and physics deal only with inorganic amorphous solids. The optical and physical properties of glass make it suitable for applications such as flat glass. Strictly speaking.and eyewear. Contents [hide] • • 1 History 2 Glass production ○ ○ ○ ○ 2. while plastics and similar organics are covered by polymer science.3 Glassmaking in the laboratory 2.3 Physical properties 4.1 Glass versus a supercooled liquid 4. probably from a Germanic word for a transparent. reinforcement fiber (glass-reinforced plastic. Commonly. Many glasses contain silica as their main component and glass former. however. It was in the Roman glassmaking center at Trier. often extended to all amorphous solids (and melts that easily form amorphous solids). and art.2 Contemporary glass production 2. glass fiber reinforced concrete). lustrous substance. Muscovy-glass. including plastics.2 Behavior of antique glass 4.3. such as ion implantation.1 Glass ingredients 2. besides traditional melting techniques. container glass. resins. a glass is defined as an inorganic product of fusion which has been cooled through its glass transition to the solid state without crystallising.1 Color 4. and aluminium oxynitride.3. laboratory equipment. and the sol-gel method. that the late-Latin term glesum originated. or other silica-free amorphous solids.
the soda makes the glass water soluble. generally obtained from limestone). other substances are added to common glass to simplify processing. In the middle is the mark from the glass blower's pipe. which is usually undesirable. Pure silica (SiO2) has a "glass melting point"— at a viscosity of 10 Pa·s (100 P)— of over 2300 °C (4200 °F). However. Soda-lime glasses account for about 90% of manufactured glass. some magnesium oxide (MgO) and aluminium oxide (Al2O3) are added to provide for a better chemical durability. The resulting glass contains about 70 to 74% silica by weight and is called a soda-lime glass. so lime (calcium oxide (CaO). "soda" refers to the original source of sodium carbonate in the soda ash obtained from certain plants. which lowers the melting point to about 1500 °C (2700 °F) in soda-lime glass.  Glass production Main articles: Glass production and Float glass  Glass ingredients Quartz sand (silica) as main raw material for commercial glass production Oldest mouth-blown window-glass in Sweden (Kosta Glasbruk. Småland. . 1742). History Main article: History of glass The history of creating glass can be traced back to 3500 BCE in Mesopotamia. While pure silica can be made into glass for special applications (see fused quartz). One is sodium carbonate (Na2CO3).
. Some elements can play multiple roles. The modifiers (calcium. Adding barium also increases the refractive index. are much less mobile themselves and also hinder diffusion of other ions.As well as soda and lime. decreasing the viscosity of the melt and lowering the melting temperature.g. Alkaline earth ions. The alkaline metal ions are small and mobile. and increases refractive index. germanium) form a highly crosslinked network of chemical bonds. The most common commercial glasses contain both alkali and alkaline earth ions (usually sodium and calcium). e. For more details. sodium chloride. lamps. The presence of non-bridging oxygens lowers the relative number of strong bonds in the material and disrupts the network. this allows easier removal of bubbles and working at lower temperatures. Thorium oxide gives glass a high refractive index and low dispersion and was formerly used in producing high-quality lenses. sodium. compensated by nearby non-bridging oxygen atoms. with their two positive charges and requirement for two non-bridging oxygen ions to compensate for their charge. lowers viscosity of the melt.  Composition and properties There are three classes of components for oxide glasses: network formers. The recycled glass saves on raw materials and energy. especially the alkalis. sulfur or fluorine compounds. The viscosity decrease of lead glass melt is very significant (roughly 100 times in comparison with soda glasses). see lead glass. lead. hence its frequent use as an additive in vitreous enamels and glass solders. beryllium. but due to its radioactivity has been replaced by lanthanum oxide in modern eye glasses. However. vacuum tubes. Addition of lead(II) oxide lowers melting point. or antimony oxide are added to reduce the bubble content in the glass. while boron may be added to change the thermal and electrical properties. aluminium.5 vs 106. they are usually present as ions. while cerium(IV) oxide can be used for glass that absorbs UV wavelengths. fining agents such as sodium sulfate. . or as a modifier. and to its electrical resistance. bound by one covalent bond to the glass network and holding one negative charge to compensate for the positive ion nearby. Glass batch calculation is the method by which the correct raw material mixture is determined to achieve the desired glass composition. Finally. magnesium. The high ionic radius of the Pb2+ ion renders it highly immobile in the matrix and hinders the movement of other ions. and modifiers. allowing leaching by water and facilitating corrosion.5 Ohm·cm.g.) have to take this in account. The intermediates (titanium. removal of the alkali ions from the glass surface by reaction with e. Lead glass or flint glass. about two orders of magnitude higher than soda-lime glass (108. according to the glass composition. as in Pyrex.. impurities in the cullet can lead to product and equipment failure. Corrosion resistance of glass can be achieved by dealkalization. lead glasses therefore have high electrical resistance. intermediates. for easier processing and satisfying corrosion resistance. Presence of alkaline metal ions has also detrimental effect to the loss tangent of the glass. zinc) can act as both network formers and modifiers. their presence in glass allows a degree of electrical conductivity. boron. most common glass has other ingredients added to change its properties. is more 'brilliant' because the increased refractive index causes noticeably more "sparkles". glasses for electronics (sealing. Their mobility however decreases the chemical resistance of the glass. The network formers (silicon. lead can act both as a network former (Pb4+ replacing Si4+). such as heat absorbing filters for movie projectors. Large amounts of iron are used in glass that absorbs infrared energy. DC at 250 °C). potassium) alter the network structure. zirconium. Lead oxide also facilitates solubility of other metal oxides and therefore is used in colored glasses. Another common glass ingredient is "cullet" (recycled glass). lithium. especially in molten state or at high temperature.
homogenization and refining (removal of bubbles). Flat glass for windows and similar applications is formed by the float glass process. . lowering the polarizability of the material. the glass is formed. pot furnaces. Stable layers were achieed with dielectric constant down to about 3. strength (toughened glass. developed between 1953 and 1957 by Sir Alastair Pilkington and Kenneth Bickerstaff of the UK's Pilkington Brothers. the raw materials are transported to the furnace. Further glass forming techniques are summarized in the table Glass forming techniques. High levels of fluorine doping lead to formation of volatile SiF2O and such glass is then thermally unstable. windshields). anti-reflective coating). or optical properties (insulated glazing. After melting.5–3. glass is usually annealed for the removal of stresses. Smaller scale furnaces for specialty glasses include electric melters. glass container internal treatment).7. Soda-lime glass for mass production is melted in gas fired units. and day tanks. Fluorine is highly electronegative and attracts the electrons in the lattice. coatings or lamination may follow to improve the chemical durability (glass container coatings.Addition of fluorine lowers the dielectric constant of glass. Such silicon dioxide-fluoride is used in manufacture of integrated circuits as an insulator. who created a continuous ribbon of glass using a molten tin bath on which the molten glass flows unhindered under the influence of gravity. Once the desired form is obtained. The top surface of the glass is subjected to nitrogen under pressure to obtain a polished finish.  Glassmaking in the laboratory A vitrification experiment for the study of nuclear waste disposal at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. bulletproof glass. Container glass for common bottles and jars is formed by blowing and pressing methods. Surface treatments.  Contemporary glass production Following the glass batch preparation and mixing.
titanates (glasses based on TiO2). In the laboratory mostly pure chemicals are used. germanates (glasses based on GeO2). more readily reacting raw materials may be preferred over relatively inert ones. acrylic glass). the melts are carried out in platinum crucibles to reduce contamination from the crucible material. aluminosilicates. These include fluoride glasses (fluorozirconates. fluoroaluminates). tellurites (glasses based on TeO2).g. and by crushing and re-melting the first melt. The striations must be avoided through good homogenization. Glass homogeneity is achieved by homogenizing the raw materials mixture (glass batch). Usually. borate glasses. Also.Failed laboratory glass melting test. The raw materials for laboratory-scale glass melts are often different from those used in mass production because the cost factor has a low priority. chalcogenides. Some glasses that do not include silica as a major constituent may have physico-chemical properties useful for their application in fibre optics and other specialized technical applications. novel techniques are used to increase cooling rate. antimonates (glasses based on Sb2O3). alkaline earth oxides and hydroxides. nitrates. and chalcogenide glasses. phosphate glasses. fluorides. See also: Optical lens design. such as Al(OH)3 over Al2O3. including plastics (e. New chemical glass compositions or new treatment techniques can be initially investigated in small-scale laboratory experiments. Fabrication and testing of optical components  Sol-gel science/technology Main article: Sol-gel  Silica-free glasses Besides common silica-based glasses. phosphates. e. or reduce crystal nucleation triggers.. arsenates (glasses based on As2O3). borates. by stirring the melt. carbonates and many other substances.g.. In order to make glass from materials with poor glass forming tendencies. . or that the impurities are quantified (loss on ignition). The obtained glass is usually annealed to prevent breakage during processing. Care must be taken that the raw materials have not reacted with moisture or other chemicals in the environment (such as alkali oxides and hydroxides. Examples of these techniques include aerodynamic levitation (the melt is cooled whilst floating in a gas stream). many other inorganic and organic materials may also form glasses. or boron oxide). sodium selenite may be preferred over easily evaporating SeO2. (the melt is pressed between two metal anvils) and roller quenching (the melt is poured through rollers). metals. tantalates (glasses based on Ta2O5). carbon dioxide (see below). amorphous carbon. splat quenching. Evaporation losses during glass melting should be considered during the selection of the raw materials.
The standard definition of a glass (or vitreous solid) is a solid formed by rapid melt quenching. The substance was named amorphous carbonia(a-CO2) and exhibits an atomic structure resembling that of silica. In 2006 Italian scientists created an amorphous phase of carbon dioxide using extreme pressure. The notion that glass flows to an appreciable extent over .  Glass versus a supercooled liquid Glass is generally classed as an amorphous solid rather than a liquid. Glass displays all the mechanical properties of a solid. although in certain circumstances. there is no crystalline analogue of the amorphous phase. If the cooling is sufficiently rapid (relative to the characteristic crystallization time) then crystallization is prevented and instead the disordered atomic configuration of the supercooled liquid is frozen into the solid state at the glass transition temperature Tg. for example in atactic polymers. has the same symmetry signature (Hausdorff-Besicovitch dimensionality) as for crystalline materials. the structure of a glass exists in a metastable state with respect to its crystalline form.  Physics of glass See also Physics of glass Unsolved problems in physics What is the nature of the transition between a fluid or regular solid and a glassy phase? What are the physical mechanisms giving rise to the general properties of glasses? The amorphous structure of glassy Silica (SiO2) in two dimensions. However. due to chemical bonding characteristics glasses do possess a high degree of short-range order with respect to local atomic polyhedra. As in other amorphous solids.Under extremes of pressure and temperature solids may exhibit large structural and physical changes which can lead to polyamorphic phase transitions. Generally. the atomic structure of a glass lacks any long range translational periodicity. however there is local ordering with respect to the tetrahedral arrangement of Oxygen (O) atoms around the Silicon (Si) atoms. No long range order is present. although disordered. It is deemed that the bonding structure of glasses.
The pieces were not.  Behavior of antique glass The observation that old windows are often thicker at the bottom than at the top is often offered as supporting evidence for the view that glass flows over a matter of centuries. the glass transition may be described as analogous to a second-order phase transition where the intensive thermodynamic variables such as the thermal expansivity and heat capacity are continuous. then ancient Roman and Egyptian objects should have flowed proportionately more — but this is not observed. This plate was then cut to fit a window. whereas rotational and translational motion is arrested. Similarly. the relaxation period (characteristic flow time) of cathedral glasses would be even longer. the technique used was to spin molten glass so as to create a round. It is then assumed that the glass was once uniform. entropy and enthalpy are discontinuous through the glass transition range. From a more commonsense point of view. Hence. as would be caused by carelessness at the time of installation.) If medieval glass has flowed perceptibly. In actuality. The change in heat capacity at a glass transition and a melting transition of comparable materials are typically of the same order of magnitude. When actually installed in a window frame. In glass factories. physicist Edgar D. Occasionally such glass has been found thinner side down or thicker on either side of the window's edge. but has flowed to its new shape. The resulting glass is thicker at the location of the pour." (1032 years is many times longer than the estimated age of the Universe. Despite this. and hence the glass transition cannot be classed as one of the classical equilibrium phase transformations in solids. the equilibrium theory of phase transformations in solids does not entirely hold for glass. Both in a glass and in a crystal it is mostly only the vibrational degrees of freedom that remain active. Mass production of glass window panes in the early twentieth century caused a similar effect. Modern glass intended for windows is produced as float glass and is very uniform in thickness. which is a property of liquid. and will crystallize almost instantly if a crystal is added as a core. absolutely flat. This helps to explain why both crystalline and non-crystalline solids exhibit rigidity on most experimental time scales. These sheets were cut into smaller window panes with nonuniform thickness. However.the predicted relaxation time for GeO2 at room temperature is 1032 years. glass tends to behave as a solid below its glass transition temperature. but it is below the freezing point of the material. the reason for this is that when panes of glass were commonly made by glassblowers..extended periods of time is not supported by empirical research or theoretical analysis (see viscosity of amorphous materials). the edges of the disk became thicker as the glass spun. molten glass was poured onto a large cooling table and allowed to spread. the glass would be placed thicker side down both for the sake of stability and to prevent water accumulating in the lead cames at the bottom of the window. indicating that the change in active degrees of freedom is comparable as well. Although the atomic structure of glass shares characteristics of the structure in a supercooled liquid. Several other points exemplify the misconception of the "cathedral glass" theory: • Writing in the American Journal of Physics. described above). typically with the location of the pour centred in one of the panes (known as "bull's-eyes") for decorative effect. located at the center of the large sheet. Zanotto states ". A supercooled liquid behaves as a liquid. however. • . Some people consider glass to be a liquid due to its lack of a first-order phase transition where certain thermodynamic variables such as volume. mostly flat and even plate (the crown glass process. glass should be considered a solid since it is rigid according to everyday experience..
Many glasses have a chemical composition which includes what are referred to as absorption centers. This is what gives rise to color. Close to this temperature there are interesting time-dependent properties. but if the material is left on a table for a week it may flow like a liquid. as indicated by the transition of polypropylene glycol of -72 °C and -71 °C over different timescales.  Physical properties See also: List of physical properties of glass  Color Main article: Glass coloring and color marking See also: Transparent_materials#Absorption of light in solids Common soda-lime float glass appears green in thick sections because of Fe2+ impurities.prehistoric obsidian blades should have lost their edge. In general for polymers there is a relation between the glass transition temperature and the speed of the deformation. even though it is under much higher stress from gravitational loads than vertical window glass. then the effect should be noticeable in antique telescopes. Many polymers that we use in daily life such as polystyrene and polypropylene are in a glassy state but they are not too far below their glass transition temperature as opposed to rubber which is used above its glass transition temperature. The frequencies of the spectrum which are not absorbed are either reflected back or transmitted for our physical observation. This simply means that for the fast timescale its transition temperature is above room temperature. a phenomenon that is not observed. They absorb certain portions of the visible spectrum. This may cause them to be selective in their absorption of visible lightwaves (or white light frequencies). The behavior of a material that has a glass transition close to room temperature depends upon the timescale during which the material is manipulated. Thus. • If glass flows at a rate that allows changes to be seen with the naked eye after centuries. while reflecting others. If the material is hit it may break like a solid glass. The shift in temperature with timescale is not very large however. One of these is known as aging. There are many examples of centuries-old glass shelving which has not bent. To observe window glass flowing as liquid at room temperature we would have to wait a much longer time than any human can exist. Therefore it is safe to consider a glass a solid far enough below its transition temperature: Cathedral glass does not flow because its glass transition temperature is many hundreds of degrees above room temperature. and by precipitation of finely dispersed particles (such as . Any slight deformation in the antique telescopic lenses would lead to a dramatic decrease in optical performance. Their mechanical properties may well change over time and this is serious concern when applying these materials in construction. • Some glasses have a glass transition temperature close to or below room temperature. color in glass may be obtained by addition of electrically charged ions (or color centers) that are homogeneously distributed. but for the slow one it is below. this is not observed either (although obsidian may have a different viscosity from window glass).
Frequency selective optical filters can be utilized to alter or enhance the brightness and contrast of a digital image. although iron(II) oxide (FeO) impurities of up to 0. This resonant mode of energy and data transmission via electromagnetic (light) wave propagation.in photochromic glasses). Manganese dioxide can be added in small amounts to remove the green tint given by iron(II) oxide. The larger the index of refraction. Sulfur. Optically transparent materials focus on the response of a material to incoming light waves of a range of wavelengths. Further FeO and Cr2O3 additions may be used for the production of green bottles. the refractive index of the core must be greater than that of the cladding. together with carbon and iron salts. The fiber consists of a core surrounded by a cladding layer.1 wt% produce a green tint which can be viewed in thick pieces or with the aid of scientific instruments. To confine the optical signal in the core. The index of refraction is a way of measuring the speed of light in a material. A laser bouncing down an acrylic rod.  Optical waveguides Main article: Waveguide (optics) The propagation of light through a multi-mode optical fiber. (Note: The index of refraction is the ratio of the speed of light in a vacuum to the speed of light in a given medium. An optical fiber is a cylindrical dielectric waveguide that transmits light along its axis by the process of total internal reflection. though low powered. illustrating the total internal reflection of light in a multimode optical fiber. Typical values for core and cladding of an optical fiber are 1. Guided light wave transmission via frequency selective waveguides involves the emerging field of fiber optics and the ability of certain glassy compositions as a transmission medium for a range of frequencies simultaneously (multimode optical fiber) with little or no interference between competing wavelengths or frequencies. is relatively lossless. by definition). (The index of refraction of a vacuum is therefore equal to 1. is used to form iron polysulfides and produce amber glass ranging from yellowish to almost black.48 and 1. . the more slowly light travels in that medium. Ordinary soda-lime glass appears colorless to the naked eye when it is thin.46. respectively.
Sweden Paperweight with items inside the glass. This range of angles is called the acceptance cone of the fiber. Corning Museum of Glass . Optical waveguides are used as components in integrated optical circuits (e. the light will be completely reflected.When light traveling in a dense medium hits a boundary at a steep angle. This infrared homing (or "heat-seeking") capability is responsible for such diverse optical phenomena as "night vision" and IR luminescence.  Modern glass art Main article: Studio glass A vase being created at the Reijmyre glassworks. Light travels along the fiber bouncing back and forth off of the boundary. This effect is used in optical fibers to confine light in the core. Also of value to materials science is the sensitivity of materials to thermal radiation in the infrared (IR) portion of the EM spectrum. only light that enters the fiber within a certain range of angles will be propagated.g. light-emitting diodes. LEDs) or as the transmission medium in local and long haul optical communication systems. The size of this acceptance cone is a function of the refractive index difference between the fiber's core and cladding. Because the light must strike the boundary with an angle greater than the critical angle.
initially mostly used for pieces in a neo-classical style. Glass can also be cut with a diamond saw. From the 19th century.A glass sculpture by Dale Chihuly. some glass artists began to class themselves as in effect sculptors working in glass. Louis Comfort Tiffany in America specialized in secular stained glass. fusing. often in cameo glass. producing colored vases and similar pieces. From the 20th century. Émile Gallé. London. Cameo glass was revived for the first time since the Romans. and as part of the fine arts. various types of fancy glass started to become significant branches of the decorative arts. Glass tiles mosaic (detail). slumping. pate-de-verre. Cold work includes traditional stained glass work as well as other methods of shaping glass at room temperature. mostly of plant subjects. The Art Nouveau movement in particular made great use of glass. with René Lalique. kiln-casting. flame-working. “The Sun” at the “Gardens of Glass” exhibition in Kew Gardens. Several of the most common techniques for producing glass art include: blowing. and Daum of Nancy important names in the first French wave of the movement. both in panels and his famous lamps. The piece is 13 feet (4 metres) high and made from 1000 separate glass objects. hot-sculpting and cold-working. and also using lustre techniques. or copper wheels embedded with .
the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Traditionally this was done after the glass was blown or cast. This reduced manufacturing costs and. combined with a wider use of colored glass. which later became known as Depression glass.abrasives. Colored glass is often used.000 objects in its collection. including the Chrysler Museum.  Museums Apart from historical collections in general museums. marbles. Art is sometimes etched into glass via the use of acid. and Corning Museum of Glass. led to cheap glassware in the 1930s. In the 1920s a new mould-etch process was invented. vases. the Museum of Glass in Tacoma. and polished to give gleaming facets. These were lampworked by Leopold Blaschka and his son Rudolph. bottles. or abrasive substances. paperweights. The Harvard Museum of Natural History has a collection of extremely detailed models of flowers made of painted glass. innumerable examples exist of the use of stained glass. with more than 45. in Corning. modern works of art in glass can be seen in a variety of museums. but an endless range of sculpture and installation art as well. abrasive methods have gained popularity. so that each cast piece emerged from the mould with the image already on the surface of the glass. which houses the world's largest collection of glass art and history. beads. in which art was etched directly into the mould. the Toledo Museum of Art. NY. and other containers). the technique used in creating Waterford crystal. caustic. who never revealed the method he used to make them. As the types of acids used in this process are extremely hazardous. though sometimes the glass is painted. . Objects made out of glass include not only traditional objects such as vessels (bowls. The Blaschka Glass Flowers are still an inspiration to glassblowers today.
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