Nucleation and Crystallization of Ion-Implanted Glass
Crystallization of the ion-implanted surface region of a lithia-alumina-silica glass has been obtained by implanting Ag+ ions Which are precipitated as metallic Ag nucleation sites. Nucleation and crystal growth occurs in the implanted region when the glass is appropriately irradiated with ionizating radiation and subsequently annealed. The process of crystallization of the implanted region was studied by use of infrared reflection spectroscopy, scanning-electron microscopy, and x-ray diffraction analysis. Crystallization was observed to begin at 600–650°C by x-ray and infrared identification of the growth of lithium meta-silicate (Li2O-SiO2) and lithim di-silicate (Li2O-2SiO2) crystals. Crystallization was not observed at these temperatures either in the masked unimplanted areas or in implanted samples not exposed to ionizing radiation. In conventional glass-ceramics formed from glasses of this approximate composition, the crystallization nuclei are dispersed throughout the glass. The results of the present experiment suggest that sensitization and subsequent crystallization can be confined to the surface regions of glasses of suitable composition by means of ion implantation. Crystallization in the surface region is known to greatly increase the strength of the glass and ion implantation techniques may have some advantages over other surface strengthening mechanisms such as quenching and ion-exchange.
KeywordsGlass Ceramic Consultant Bureau Infrared Reflection Subsequent Crystallization Lithium Silicate
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