September - December 2003
Aer( )sculptures
A year after his first exposure of aer( )sculptures at, Dr Michalou(di)s a visual Artist of MIT Center for Advanced Visual Studies, present the second series of aerogel sculptures. Among others enjoy the beauty of a "light" version of Aphrodite of Milos, the object of ecstatic wonder to millions of people.
The 2003 aer( )sculptures will be exhibited in a special event at the 7 International Symposium of Aerogels, November 2-5 , Alexandria, Virginia (USA)

April-August 2003

New Sol-Gel Derived Gel-Glass Dispersed Liquid Crystals (GDLC) Formulation Yields 10-25 Fold Reduction in Device Thickness
David Levy of the Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Madrid, CSIC, Spain and co-workers have, over the past decade, developed gel-glass dispersed liquid crystals (GDLC) as an alternative material system to polymer-dispersed liquid crystals PDLCs. Such materials are of great interest as electronic liquid crystal displays (LCD), optical switches, and light modulators. The GDLCs opened a new range of possibilities in the field of optical and electro-optical devices.

January-March 2003

Aerogels are remarkable materials with unprecedented physical properties that fascinate researchers and space engineers. They have incredible insulating properties with regard to thermal, electrical and acoustic energy transfers. After  being used by NASA in various space experiments to capture cosmic dust, aerogels became, for the first time, the object of sculptural research. Dr. Iannis MICHALOU(di)S, Research Affiliate at the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at MIT tells us the story.
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Monophase Chemical Sol-Gel (MCSG) Nanofabrication Technology Platform
Monophase Chemical Sol-Gel (MCSG)is the next generation of the sol-gel technology, which is a versatile process for producing ceramic and glass materials.
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Non-corrosive layers for light alloys without chromate pretreatment
Production of non-corrosive layers for light alloys such as aluminium and magnesium.....
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August-October 2002

Simax's Boron Doped Silica Material Reduces Panda Fiber Cost
Simax Technologies, a manufacturer of advanced optical fiber and high performance materials, unveiled its newest product, boron doped silica (BDS) rod optimized for the Panda polarization maintaining (PM) fiber. Simax use a proprietary Monophase Chemical Sol-GelTM technology to manufacture specialties optical fiber preforms.
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Dr Brinker wins the 2002 Lawrence Award in Materials Research
Dr. C. Jeffrey Brinker, senior scientist, inorganic materials chemistry division at Sandia National Laboratories, and Professor of chemistry and chemical and nuclear engineering at the University of New Mexico is one of 7 winners of  this year Lawrence Award.
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100 times stronger aerogels may yield safer buildings, longer-lasting tires  
Researchers say they have developed the world's strongest, lightest solids. Called aerogels, the sturdy materials are a high-tech amalgam of highly porous glass and plastic that is as light as air. In light of the events of Sept. 11 and a heightened interest in homeland security, these new materials show promise as lightweight body armor for soldiers, shielding for armored vehicles, and stronger building materials, the researchers say.
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Colloidal inks form self-supporting scaffolds through robocasting
A new way to assemble complex, three-dimensional structures from specially formulated colloidal inks could find use in advanced ceramics, sensors, composites, catalyst supports, tissue engineering scaffolds and photonic materials.
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International Sol-Gel Society

A Survey was launched by sol-gel scientists and researchers to collect opinions and suggestions. The Idea of an International Sol-Gel Society was initiated during the 2001 Padova Sol-Gel International Workshop and a discussion has already been planned at the next Sol-Gel Workshop in Australia, August 24 through 29, 2003. 
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German Public-Private Partnership creates easy-cleaning Sol-Gel nano coating
Source: SmallTimes

June-July 2002

Terahertz Photonics another sol-gel player for Integrated Optics
Founded in 1998, Terahertz Photonics is a developer of advanced Planar Lightwave Circuit materials for use in telecom and datacom applications. Solica the Thz proprietary sol-gel process, enables the deposition of silica on silicon in a cost efficient way. The process enables also a range of ions to be easily incorporated into the silica.
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Guinness Records Names JPL's Aerogel World's Lightest Solid
A new version of aerogel, the particle-collecting substance on NASA's Stardust spacecraft, has been recognized by Guinness World Records as the solid with the lowest density. Guinness World Records approved the new aerogel's application for the least dense solid in March. Astronomer David Hawksett, Guinness World Records' science and technology judge, decided that Jones' aerogel beat out the previous record holder, an aerogel that weighed 5 milligrams per cubic centimeter (.00018 pounds per cubic inch.)
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Soft Hydrogel Nanoparticles Provide Foundation for Optically Tunable Photonic Crystals Via Controlled De-swelling
Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have developed a family of hydrogel-based nanoparticles that can be used to form photonic crystals whose optical properties can be precisely tuned by thermally adjusting the particles' water content
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April-May 2002

Nano-patterned Anti-reflective Films
Three Fraunhofer Institutes have combined their efforts in a consortium with complementary areas of competence to develop commercially viable nano-patterned sol-gel films
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Brinker elected to the National Academy of
C. Jeffrey Brinker, senior scientist, inorganic materials chemistry division, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, N.M., has been elected to the US National Academy of Engineering, for his outstanding contributions to the science of sol-gel processing.
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Sol-Gel electrochromics
NTera is developing an electrochromic display technology called NanoChromics™  using nanostructured film electrodes. The nanostructured films are derived from sol-gel precursors and formulated to suit the particular coating application method. Current applications focus in flat panel displays, medical diagnostic sensors and targeted drug delivery.
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Hiromitsu KOZUKA, Associate Professor at the department of Materials Science and Engineering, Kansai University in Japan, succeed on making optically transparent, crack free PZT thick films via a single step deposition using a modified Sol-Gel approach.

On a Spot Smaller Than a Dime, UB Chemists Print Sensors That May Detect Hundreds of Chemicals at Once
The research overcomes a key obstacle in exploiting high-tech materials, called xerogels, into which the UB team has pioneered investigations as the basis of new chemical sensors. UB group has developed innovative ways to stabilize and trap proteins within the xerogels. These proteins then can be put to work to signal the presence of important chemicals in a sample.
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Caltech scientists demonstrate compact silica laser
A team of applied physicists at the California Institute of Technology have demonstrated an ultrasmall Raman laser that is 1,000 times more efficient than previous devices. The device based on silica microspheres, could have significant applications for telecommunications and other areas where compact, highly efficient, and tunable lasers are desirable.
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January 2002

Lisa Klein has been elected New York Academy of Science fellow
Lisa C. Klein Professor of Ceramics and materials engineering at Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey has been elected fellow of the New York Academy of Science. Klein, was recognized by the academy for her breakthrough contributions to engineering, particularly in the area of sol-gel science.

Jacques Livage elected member of the French Academy of Science.
Jacques Livage Professor at the University of Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI) and one of the pioneers in Sol-Gel chemistry has been elected member of the prestigious French Academy of Sciences.

New scratch-Proof Coatings Based on Siloxane-Encapsulated Nanoparticles
Degussa developed a new hybrid formulation for scratch resistant films. They are extremely scratchproof, environmentally friendly - because they are free of solvents -, easy to apply and versatile in application, because they can develop their action just as well on parquet floors and papers as on metals and plastics. 

Degussa founds Novara Technology
The Degussa AG Aerosil & Silanes Business Unit, Düsseldorf, has founded the joint venture Novara Technology (NTECH), with headquarters in Novara, near Milan, Italy. Degussa and the former shareholders of the previous company GDE (Gel Design Engineering) each own a 50 percent share in the new company. Novara Technology has developed a sol-gel based process for the cost-efficient and environmentally safe production of technologically superior products made of quartz glass.

November-December 2001

New Sol-Gel NiO Precursors
Inorgtech Press release
There is a growing requirement for chemical routes (e.g. sol-gel ) for the deposition of nickel oxide (NiO) and complex oxides containing nickel, which have a number of industrial applications. For instance, NiO is a component of electrochromic devices such as switchable automobile mirrors and smart windows, whist nickel ferrite and nickel zinc ferrite have applications in high frequency microwave devices.  Inorgtech launched recently two new NiO Sol-Gel precursors.

PROTAVIC New supplier of sol-gel Chemical Precursors and Preparations

Protavic, part of Protex International a French chemical specialties company, has launched recently a catalogue with a variety of sol-gel precursors and ready to use preparations including optical coating and hybrids formulations.

October 2001

Light used to control size of nanopores

An Albuquerque-based research group reports precise size adjustments of nanopores through use of a simple ultraviolet beam of light.The precision is so great that it could achieve the long-sought goal of membrane-based separation of oxygen from nitrogen, a difference in size of 0.2 Angstroms [0.02 nanometers], says Jeff Brinker, senior scientist at the Department of Energy’s Sandia National Laboratories professor at the University of New Mexico, and lead researcher on the multi-institution project.
Read the full story

Molecular programming of intelligent responses in sol-gels

Professor Bakul Dave presented recent progress in the field at the XI Int. Workshop on Glasses, Ceramics, Hybrids and Nanocomposites from Gels in Padova Italy. His presentation  focused on the design and assembly of novel sol-gel -derived materials and devices that are capable of detecting and responding to changes in their environment.  The ability to sense and respond to environment is a basic requirement of intelligence, and these materials constitute a novel class of "smart" glasses. 
Read the full story

September 2001

TeO2-based materials made by Sol-Gel Process
Recent studies on TeO2-based glasses have shown that their non linear refractive indices
could be up to 100 times as large as that of SiO2. Such materials are  very promising for nonlinear optical device technology.A group of researchers from the University of Limoges, France succeed on synthesizing a sol-gel made TeO2 and establish the experimental conditions at which powders, films or monoliths can be obtained. For the first time the b -TeO2 compound, that have never been obtained during the crystallization of tellurite glasses, has been evidenced during the ageing of TeO2 gels.
Read the full story

Nanoparticles 'tailor' complex fluids for photonics, ceramics applications
Colloidal suspensions are complex fluids utilized in
numerous applications ranging from advanced materials to drug delivery. Controlling the stability of these fluids can influence such characteristics as flow behavior, structure  and mechanical response, and may result in materials with improved optical and electrical properties. Researchers at the University of Illinois have discovered a fundamentally new approach for tailoring the stability of colloidal suspensions. 
Read the full story

July 2001

Hierarchically Ordered Nanoporous-Macroporous Materials
David Pine and Bradley Chmelka from the dept.of Chemical Engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara, describe their research work relative to the preparation of transparent macroscopically patterned, mesostructured films and monoliths with included dye species. These materials are efficient waveguides and display promising amplified spontaneous emission and  optical limiting properties.
Read the full story

ORMOCER®s for integrated optical circuits
A  research team from the Fraunhofer-Institut für Silicatforschung, Germany, reports a new photopatternable
hybrid material for low cost planar optics
Read the full story

Lumenon announced move forward business strategy....
The Lumenon's newly appointed President and CEO, Mr. Gary Moskovitz, announced  the Company’s move-forward business strategy. “After an intensive analysis of current business conditions, we are taking the appropriate steps to implement and communicate what we believe to be a thoughtful program that will allow us to focus resources, generate revenue, and rationalize spending," said Mr. Moskovitz
Read the full story

The world's lightest ceramic foam..
Developed by a team of scientists leaded by professor Gideon Grader from Technion the Israel Institute of Technology, the new ceramic foam contains 95 % of air enabling a remarkably low density and high acoustic, and thermal insulation.

Perfecting porosity
Some chemists worry plenty about nothing... Well, almost nothing. It's the holes inside solid materials that are on their minds.
by Jessica Gorman
Source: ScienceNews

High strength Aerogels
It's not much more than smoke. Yet the new material developed at the University of Oklahoma is no lightweight when it comes to strength. It is only half as dense as balsa wood. But you need a hammer to break it.
by Philip Ball
Source: Nature Sienceupdate

May 2001

Is Sol-Gel better than CVD for optical fibers ?
Simax Technologies, another Sol-Gel Start-up claim to revolutionize the way optical fibers are made for the telecommunication industry.
Read the full story

StockerYale acquires KLOE S.A.

StockerYale acquires KLOE S.A., a French Sol-Gel Start-up to develop Integrated optics for WDM Telecom market
Read the full story

New Sol-Gel coating protect carbon from oxidation at 1450°C

Dr Bahlawane Naoufal from Fukuoka University (FIRECS), Japan, reports here an extraordinary coating protecting carbon in hot oxidizing atmosphere. The registered weight loss after 100h at 1450°C is less than 0.25 wt %.
Read the full story

Sol-Gel Aluminosilicate films doped with Ce3+ shows enhanced photosensitivity

A French team of researchers have reported that aluminosilicate planar waveguides doped with Ce3+ and prepared by combining a sol gel process and the dip-coating technique can be used for Bragg grating photoinscription
Read the full story

Conjugated polymers easily implanted in rigid in a silica structure

Intelligent nanostructures that report on their environment by changing color from blue to fluorescent red under mechanical, chemical, and thermal stress have been created by Brinker's research group at Sandia National Laboratories
Read the full story

April 2001

A new Sol-Gel manufacturing facility for large area coatings recently inaugurated in Saint-Etienne, France....
A new Sol-Gel manufacturing facility for large area coatings recently inaugurated in Saint-Etienne, France. More than 8000 m² of AR and other optical thin films will be manufactured here to fully satisfy the needs of the French high power laser program "Megajoule".....
Read the full story

Photopolymerizable glass offers a diffraction efficiency of almost 100%
The prospects for producing practical holographic storage devices from organically modified sol-gel glasses are excellent
Read the full story

Crosfield, change of ownership from ICI to INEOS

Founded  in 1815, Crosfield Ltd, the British specialist and  chemical manufacturer of silicates, zeolites and silicas, changes  name to INEOS Silicas Ltd starting February 2001.

March 2001

New sol-gel route for low temperature synthesis of a-Al2O3
Dr N. Bahlawane from Fukuoka University Institute 'FIRECS', Japan, reports here a low temperature (850 °C) synthesis of a-Al2O3 powder and films. The anhydrous preparation procedure allows a particular crystallization pattern that avoids the formation of q-Al2O3, well known for its relative high thermal stability. This structure (q-Al2O3) is a kind of energetic trap since annealing over 1100oC is needed to get "over it, to" pure a-Al2O3 phase.
Read the full story

January 2001 

Lumenon Opens a State-of-the-art Photonic Devices Plant
Source: Bigcharts
The sol-gel response to low cost high performance optical circuits.

Read the full story

NP Photonics light up hybrids in competition with Lumenon
Read the full story

December  2000

Pore characterisation by  NMR cryoporometry
by  J.B.W.Webber, J.H. Strange and J.C. Dore 
Read the full story

Deposition of Optical Microcomponents by ink-jet process
by R. Danzebrink and M.A. Aegerter 
Read the full story

Optically controlled nanostructures
Brinker's team demonstrate an optical approach to controlling the size of nanopores
by Phillip B. Espinasse
Source: Photonics online
Read the full story

November 2000

LightPath Technologies acuire Geltech Inc.

Ligth used to control size nanopores
 From Sandia National Laboratory News release  

October  2000

1st French Workshop on Nanoparticles

It was organized October 19th at Ecole Polytechnique. More than 100 researchers actively investigating this field attended the workshop. Presentations and posters covered  a wide range of research topics from fundamental QD's physics to synthesis routes and nano-characterization tools. 
Workshop program and few presentations are available online  

September 2000

Sol-Gel Start-up Lumenon announces plant inauguration
Source: Lumenon
Read the full story 

Silica gel coatings for Ink-Jet Media
by D.M. Chapman Grace Davison
Read the full story

August 2000

Aerogels predictable structure
Glenn Fox  is tailoring the aerogels structure at the molecular level by applying a dendritic methodology 
Source: LLNL
Read the full story 

May 2000

Functioning Nanostructures Self-Assemble Out of Ink
Source: Science à GoGo

Nanostructures that perform work during drying..
Read the full story

March 1999

Self-assembled nanospheres may be helpful against disease or terrorism, or as fillers and coatings
Source: Sandia Labs
"Self-assembling nanospheres that fit inside each other  like Russian dolls are one form of a broad range of submicroscopic spheres created in the past 12 months at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Sandia National Laboratories". 
Read the full story.

February 1999

Aerogels capture space dust  
Source: Science NASA News
Everything in the universe, from planets to the particles of your skin, is composed of star dust. But even though star dust is the clay from which all things are formed, actually going into space to capture a pure sample is not an easy task. Yet NASA plans to do just that, using a lightweight insulating material called aerogel. 
Read the full story

MacChesney from Bell Labs Honored for MCVD and Sol-Gel
Source: Bell-Labs
Bell Labs scientist John MacChesney, inventor of two of the world's major technologies for making communications optical fiber, received the 1999 John Tyndall Award today at the international Optical Fiber Communications (OFC).
Read the full story

October 1998

The experience made on aerogels by J. Glenn in space
Source: Science NASA News
Read about the experiments conducted in space and learn more about aerogels and their future applications.
Read the full story

John Glenn conduct tests with a space age super substance called aerogel on  STS-95
Source: Science NASA News
For Glenn's first orbital flight the mission goal was to return safely. Now 30 years later, he will use space not just as 'the high ground' but as a working laboratory. Glenn and the other astronauts will be making the first run at space-manufacture for a product called aerogel.
Read the full story


July 1998

Sandia, UNM scientists mimic structure of seashells to make strong, tough coatings
Source: Sandia  Labs
Researchers at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Sandia National Laboratories and the University of New Mexico (UNM) disclose a rapid and efficient method to self-assemble diverse materials into coatings that mimic seashell structures. 
Read the full story

April 1998

Homesteading the Planets with Local Materials
By Simon Mansfield Source: SpaceDaily
Building lunar and Martian bases from local on-site materials is a concept almost as old as space exploration. An attractive material for construction on the Moon is aerogel, an exceptional insulator of heat and sound. Aerogel has been described as frozen smoke since it weighs only slightly more than air. It's like foam rubber, only the cells are incredibly tiny, and their walls are equally thin. Sodium silicate (NaSiO2), a common mineral on both the Moon and Mars, could be used to produce high-density xerogels, or low-density aerogels.
Read the full story

January 1998

Future looks Bright for Sol-Gel Techniques
Photonics Spectra News
Seven European partners have completed a three-year project to develop sol-gel processing techniques for waveguides, lens arrays, waveguide amplifiers, electro-optical modulators, switches and other elements. The goal was to develop these techniques to introduce lower-cost manufacturing methods for optical components.
Read the full story

November 1997

Low-temperature sol-gel process developed
Source: SPIE, OE reports
Iraj Najafi
(Ecole Polytechnique; Montreal, Canada) and Mark Andrews (McGill University, Montreal) have developed a process that can be used to mass produce integrated photonic devices, circuits and chips.
Read the full story

September 1997

Super-sensitive coating improves detection of dangerous molecules
Source: Sandia  Labs
The sol gel made micrometer thick film has an extreme porosity which  increases the sensor's surface area, and therefore sensitivity by a factor of about 500
Read the full story

May  1997

Metal Detecting Molecules May Find Use in Process Water Recycling, Groundwater Cleanup, Virus Detection, and More.
Source: Sandia  Labs
A Sandia team is studying ways to entrap these spherical liposomes in porous silica materials called sol-gels - essentially whipped glasses - which may open doors to a variety of practical inventions, from water purity sensors in microchip factories to molecule-sized metal detectors for environmental cleanup operations.
Read the full story

October 1996

First space-Produced Aerogel
Source: Science NASA News
First results from the aerogel made aboard the fligth of the starfire Rocket in April 1996
Read the full story


Older News...

Building Materials On The Moon And Mars
Source: Discovery News
Building lunar and Martian bases from local materials is a concept almost as old as space exploration itself. But scientists have refined their ideas of how to use these materials and work around the challenges of building in low or zero gravity.
Read the full story

Better Detection, Recovery of Heavy Metals
Source: UCLA
Sol-Gel processing offers ultra high sensitivities and ion specific filtration...
Read the full story 

Copper Integrated with Low-k Materials
Source: Semiconductor International
Microscopic glass bubbles filled with air, nature's ideal insulator, may be the key to the ultrafast integrated circuits (ICs) of tomorrow.. ICs made with xerogel will fuel at least tenfold increases in the speed of microprocessors and digital signal processors.
Read the full story
More material about this story at  the Advanced Technology program site

New material development for micro electronics
Source: Texas Instruments
As downscaling continues in integrated circuits, speed is no longer limited by circuit delays but by the parasitic capacitance between metal interconnects. TI materials scientists are investigating oxide xerogels that may potentially increase the performance of microprocessors and digital signal processors by as much as 50 percent. 
Read the full story

Self-Assembly of Nano-Structured Materials
Sandia Labs
Sandia National Laboratories has combined their world leading sol-gel processing capability with organic self-assembly to produce an enabling technology for a wide range of novel nanostructured materials that are not commercially available.
Read the full story

New Air Sampling Sorbents prepared by the sol-gel method
By Mike Sigman Source: the ONRL Review Mag
The sorbents are based on an organically modified silica prepared by the sol-gel method. The excellent performance of the new sorbents is attributed to their large surface areas and high thermal stability. an article 
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Source: the Office for pollution prevention Virginia Newsletter
The Ford Motor Company Research Laboratory is currently studying two options for shortening the time frame needed to achieve optimal conditions for catalytic
conversion. Both of these options include the use of Sol-gel technology which is a method of making ceramic and glass-like materials at room temperature. 
Read the full story

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