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The basic component of glass fibers is silica, SiO2.

In its pure

form it exists as a polymer, (SiO2)n.

It has no true melting point but softens up to 2000C, where it

starts to degrade.

It is usual to introduce impurities into the glass in the form of

other materials to lower its working temperature.

In the polymer it forms SiO4 groups which are configured as a

tetrahedron with the silicon atom at the center, and four oxygen atoms at the corners. sharing the oxygen atoms.

These atoms then form a network bonded at the corners by

Glass is an amorphous (non-crystalline) solid material.

Fusion of sand (SiO2), soda (Na2CO3) & lime (CaO) that

produces a transparent solid when cooled. Glasses are typically brittle and optically transparent. A 3D network of atoms which lacks the repeated, orderly arrangement typical of crystalline materials.


Has no definite melting point

Can absorb, reflect or transmit A good electrical insulator Affected by alkalis Not affected by air, water Very brittle Soften on liquid It is light Has no crystal structural

Borosilicate Glass (pyrex): 5% borax (Na2B4O7) is added to

resist breaking when heated or cooled.

Colored Glass: metal oxides or colloidal iron (Fe) & sulfur (S)

are added to change its color.

Lead glass: Pb increases refractive index & density

Flat glass: made by a float glass process; molten glass is

floated on a pool of tin while cooling. Commonly found in doors and windows.
Laminated glass: used in windshields, two sheets of glass with

plastic between them.

Tempered safety glass: used in car side windows and designed

to break into tiny pieces; potassium (K) replaces sodium (Na) on the surface.

Very high tensile strength Excellent resistance to sunlight and UV Good dimensional stability Zero moisture absorbance Resistant to rotting and insects Excellent UV stability Glass textiles are of comparatively relatively low price so

they have found wide applications.

Adhesion difficulties.

Relatively heavy.
Glass fibres if breathed into the lungs can promote fatal

cancerous growth.
Brittle, poor flexing properties. Poor abrasion resistance.

Glass fabrics are used for interior furnishings wherever

high demands are placed on safety, e.g. in ships, hotels, cinemas, wall coverings, etc. Glass woven fabrics are use as bases for PTFE coatings for industrial uses, such as calender belts and building structures. Fiberglass reinforcing sheets are used in PVC-backed carpet tiles. The fiberglass prevents creep of the PVC. Glass fibers are also heat-resistant materials

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