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Author: Subject: Practical Glass Chemistry & DIY Photochromic Glass
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[*] posted on 30-11-2017 at 16:29
Practical Glass Chemistry & DIY Photochromic Glass

I haven't seen much posted here about the material science of glass, so this might be interesting. I'm still watching the video and there's a lot of good background on glass chemistry that can be done on glass itself. The photochromism comes from silver chloride dispersed through the glass matrix.



[Ben Krasnow] is no stranger to exploring the more arcane corners of hackerdom, and the latest video on his “Applied Science” channel goes into a field few DIYers have touched: homemade glass, including the photochromic variety.

That DIY glassmaking remains a largely untapped vein is not surprising given what [Ben] learned over the last months of experimenting. With searing temperatures bordering on the unobtainable, volatile ingredients that evaporate before they can be incorporated, and a final product so reactive that a platinum crucible is the best vessel for the job, glassmaking is not easy, to say the least. Glassmaking doesn’t scale down from an industrial process very well, it seems. Nonetheless, [Ben] came up with a process that could be replicated using common enough ingredients and a simple electric kiln modded with a PID controller for pinpoint temperature setting. And while Luxottica has nothing to worry about yet, he did manage to get some clearly if subtly photochromic samples, despite the challenges.

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