Indian scientists have succeeded in unraveling the secret of the process of turning glass into crystals. He first envisaged the entire process of transition from glass to crystal.
He says that this discovery can help in the safe disposal of liquid nuclear waste, which is becoming an increasingly big threat to our environment. Also, this discovery in the pharmaceutical industry will also help immensely.
In fact, a team of Indian researchers this year won the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award winner in the Physics category. Under the leadership of Rajesh Ganapati, he has studied the process of transforming into glass crystals, which is known as 'de-vitrification'.
In this team, Prof. of Jawaharlal Nehru Center for Advanced Scientific Research of Central Department of Science and Technology (DST). Apart from Ganapathy, Prof. of Indian Institute of Science (IISc). Ajay Sood and his graduate student Divya Ganapathi.
Together, they analyzed the dynamics of glass made of colloidal particles for several days. During this time they identified a parameter determining the microstructural features hidden in the glass. This parameter, called softness, determines the extent of the deviation.
This research report has been published in the journal Nature Physics. It was found that the part of the glass in which the softness parameter dominates more is converted into a crystal.
Actually, glass is a non-crystalline material, which is often transparent and in solid shape without any shape. Its molecules are not arranged in the same structure as crystals. But in certain circumstances, the molten glass can turn into a crystal due to de-vitrification when it comes to its texture.
According to scientists, this process of de-vitrification was not yet understood correctly, because its speed is very slow and it can take many decades to complete. But after the experimentation of Indian scientists, understanding this process has helped immensely.
That's why this research is important
Understanding the process of denitrification can help immensely in the pharmaceutical sector, where efforts are underway to make many drugs crystalline. In this case, the medicine will rapidly dissolve in the body and will show effect soon.
Also, liquid nuclear waste can also be buried in the ground by turning it into the solid glass, which will eliminate the risk of environmental damage from its leakage.