Scientists used metal-organic compounds to create a new type of glass, according to a new study published on March 15, 2018.
An international team of scientists developed a new form of glass using organic metallic compounds. The end result was a more pliable form of glass than convention glass made from silicon dioxide.
Compounds namely, zinc and two organic compounds—imidazolate and benzimidazolate—are used to make the new metal-organic glass. The atomic structure of this new material is similar to that of silica glass. This glass is smooth in texture and non-crystalline in structure.
The process involved during production of this glass involves first heating the source material until melted and then cooling it very rapidly, to avoid the formation of crystals. Silica glass is known to have the best glass-forming ability, however, the team reported that ZIF-62 has better. The new glass was seen to outperform 50 existing types of glass. They noted that on tweaking the recipe and adding more benzimidazolate to it, the new material gradually shows better glass-forming ability.
The team has experimented with optical and mechanical properties of ZIF-62’s, however, further research is required to understand more about the material.
“This family of glasses is so new that, while we have determined its glass-forming ability and a few other properties, we have not fully characterized all of its material properties. There also needs to be research into how to scale-up this process for manufacturing.” said John C. Mauro, co-author of the study.