Glass body formed from a vapor-derived gel and process for produ

Glass manufacturing – Processes – Forming product or preform from molten glass


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65 312, 65 181, 65 182, 65900, 65901, 65DIG16, 423331, 501 12, C03B 3700, C03C 2502




The disclosed simple, economical and rapid sol-gel process for forming a silica-based glass body, termed the "vapogel" process, comprises introduction of a silicon halide-containing gas (e.g., SiCl.sub.4 +O.sub.2) into an aqueous medium. The thus formed sol can gel within minutes, resulting in a monolithic gel from which particles having a narrow size distribution can easily be formed. The thus formed particles can be used to produce a glass body such as an optical fiber. Various techniques for forming the glass body from the gel are disclosed. Among the many advantages of the vapogel method are its ability to produce very homogeneous mixed oxide glasses of composition not obtainable by prior art sol-gel processes, and the advantageous mechanical properties of the gel produced by the method. The latter makes possible, inter alia, formation of particles having a relatively narrow size distribution.

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