Stronger glass

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have developed a new glass-making technique. Glasses composed of more organized molecules are more stable and durable, while glasses with haphazard molecular assemblies are less stable and may degrade over time.With the new technology, they created a novel glass that is stronger and more stable than glass made in traditional ways. In their new work, researchers build glass layer by layer using a method called "vapor deposition." Glass is heated to the point of evaporation and allowed to condense on a cold surface, where the vapor forms an ultrathin liquid film. By adding layers to the surface one at a time, each sheet of particles can move into a more organized arrangement before solidifying. By using their method as a general technique to control stability and solubility of molecular glass, it may be possible to develop drug compounds that were previously unusable. They may also be able to use stable glass films to extend the shelf life of existing medical tools like off-the-shelf blood and pregnancy testing kits.

Source: physorg.comAdded: 20 March 2007