How Thermal Processing is Used to Improve High Purity Quartz
Monday January 14, 2019
The Quartz Corp is dedicated to continuously improving the consistency of our products. A key area of development that our facility in Drag is currently undergoing is the upgrading of our thermal processes. Calcination, or the high temperature processing of quartz sand, helps to improve the quality and consistency of quartz sand products, and can lead to improved clarity and performance of the quartz glass produced with the material.
Improvements through calcination include combustion of organic materials in the quartz, bursting of fluid and gas inclusions which may be trapped in the quartz grain, and reduction of surface-bonded OH groups on the quartz grains. All of these improvements reduce the bubble-forming potential in the glass produced.
Demand for high performance is especially true in the large diameter monocrystalline solar crucible industry and the semiconductor crucible industry. This is because these large crucibles have the same limits and specifications as smaller crucibles for the allowable number of bubbles, but are constructed from a much higher volume of quartz. Defects in the crucible caused by bubbles can lead to a significant increase in yield losses when pulling silicon ingots, while improved glass viscosity from lower OH can lead to better performance of the quartz glass at high temperature.
All grades of quartz sand sold by the Quartz Corp are thermally processed, but in order to better serve our customers, we are introducing new thermal processing technology which can be used to create a new family of products. Trials with customers have been positive to date. If you would like to learn more about high purity quartz and our calcination methods, please contact us or download our datasheets for more information.