A Family of Far-Infrared-Transmitting Glasses in the Ga–Ge–Te System for Space Applications


  • This work has been partially supported by Umicore–Irglass S. A., Z. A. du Boulais, 35690 Acigné (France).


Conditions of formation of bulk tellurium chalcogenide glasses, containing 70–80 at % Te associated to Ga and Ge are described. The characteristic temperatures are measured: the glass-transition temperature, Tg, is situated in the range 140–185 °C and the difference Tx – Tg, where Tx is the onset crystallization temperature, is in the range 76–113 °C. Moreover, the optical transmission window is exceptional, ranging from 1.99 μm in the bandgap up to 28 μm in the phonon region.

Developed within the framework of requirements for the Darwin mission (a search for and study of extrasolar planets), feasibility of infrared optical fibers formed from these glasses is studied. Drawing experiments are conducted with the glass Ga2-Ge3Te15, which possesses the maximum Tx – Tg, and a first optical fiber is presented.