Screening apparatus for glass development

Motivation

The production or introduction of new speciality glasses requires a long and expensive period of development. Timeintensive melting processes needed to analyze properties and melting behavior of the new glasses still further increase the costs. It is a great effort to technologically enable accurately reproducible casting processes. Even a delay of only a few seconds during the casting can significantly change some of the properties.

The automatic approach


The automation of the melting process for a systematic development of glass systems reduces costs significantly and improves the reproducibility.

The automatically produced samples can be characterized quickly and efficiently in our laboratories; some properties can be determined in situ during the melting process.

The screening apparatus

The worldwide unique screening apparatus developed at Fraunhofer ISC consists of a weighing unit for 10 components and an electrically heated furnace (up to 1700 °C) and 5 independently working furnaces (up to 1750 °C). A robot performs the powder mixing and then transfers the homogeneous powder into the furnace chamber. The glass is melted and homogenized in a platinum 100 ml crucible. Then the liquid glass is poured out into a stainless steel crucible. The glass is cooled down slowly in a separate furnace to relieve stress. This allows for a production of 16 different samples of glass with a defined batch composition of high optical quality within 20 hours.

The following parameters are variable:

  • Automatic raw material dosing of up to 10 components
  • Adjustable melting program for individual samples
  • Selection of themodynamic models for possible glass systems

Our range of services

  • Advice on the selection of appropriate glass systems for the development of new types of glasses according to your specifications
  • Screening of new glass systems
  • Characterization and interpretation of the properties of the samples produced by the glass screening apparatus according to your specifications