Adding colour and special properties
The agents used to colour glass are generally metallic oxides. The same oxide may produce different colours with different glass mixtures, and different oxides of the same metal may produce different colours. The purple-blue of cobalt, the chrome green or yellow of chromium, the dichroic canary colour of uranium, and the violet of manganese are constant. Ferrous oxide produces an olive green or a pale blue according to the glass with which it is mixed. Ferric oxide gives a yellow colour but requires an oxidizing agent to prevent reduction to the ferrous state. Lead gives a pale yellow colour. Silver oxide gives a permanent yellow stain. Finely divided vegetable charcoal added to a soda–lime glass gives a yellow colour. Selenites and selenates give a pale pink or pinkish yellow.

Tellurium appears to give a pale pink tint. Nickel with a potash–lead glass gives a violet colour, and a brown colour with a soda–lime glass. Copper gives a peacock blue, which becomes green if the proportion of the copper oxide is increased.
An important class of materials is the chalcogenide glasses, which are selenides, containing thallium, arsenic, tellurium, and antimony in various proportions. They behave as amorphous semiconductors. Their photoconductive properties are also valuable.
Certain metallic glasses have magnetic properties; their characteristics of ease of manufacture, magnetic softness, and high electrical resistivity make them useful in the magnetic cores of electrical power transformers.

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