Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

World's Largest Fast-Growth Crystal Grown At Lawrence Livermore Lab

Date:
February 14, 2000
Source:
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Summary:
The world's largest fast-growth crystal, weighing in at 701 pounds, has been grown by researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

LIVERMORE, Calif. - The world's largest fast-growth crystal, weighing in at 701 pounds, has been grown by researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

The pyramid-shaped KDP (potassium dihydrogen phosphate) crystal measures approximately 26 inches by 21 inches by 23 inches high. It was grown in a record 52 days using a special rapid-growth technique that delivers twice the yield originally projected.

The enormous crystal will be sliced into plates for use in the National Ignition Facility (NIF), a giant laser under construction at Lawrence Livermore. The crystal plates (1/2 inch thick and 16-1/2 inches square) will be used to convert the laser's infrared light beams to ultraviolet light just before the beams strike the laser target.

The National Ignition Facility, whose primary purpose will be to help maintain the safety and reliability of the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile, will require as many as 600 crystal plates.

Based upon a Russian technique pioneered by Natalia Zaitseva, now at Livermore, the Lab's improved rapid-growth process begins with a synthetic, thumbnail-sized seed crystal placed inside a six-foot-high tank filled with nearly a metric ton of supersaturated KDP solution at 150 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature is gradually decreased to maintain supersaturation as the growing crystal extracts salt from the solution.

The record size of the latest crystal was achieved by giving the solution a transfusion of additional salt though a device called a continuous filtration system, which helps maintain crystal quality.

"This technique offers the possibility of producing even larger and higher quality crystals in the future," said Ruth Hawley-Fedder, group leader for the Livermore crystal growing team. "Our newest recordholder could have grown even larger, but we simply ran out of room in our growth tank."

The improved technique has been shared with commercial crystal suppliers who are producing crystals for NIF. About half the required crystals have been produced.

"Ruth and her team brought large-scale rapid-growth technology to the reliability needed to realize savings of millions of dollars for both construction and later operation of NIF," said Alan Burnham, deputy system manager for NIF final optics.

The previous crystal record-holder weighed 650 pounds. It was also produced at Livermore, using an earlier variant of the rapid-growth technique.

Founded in 1952, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is a national security laboratory, with a mission to ensure national security and apply science and technology to the important issues of our time. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. "World's Largest Fast-Growth Crystal Grown At Lawrence Livermore Lab." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 February 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/02/000214074907.htm>.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. (2000, February 14). World's Largest Fast-Growth Crystal Grown At Lawrence Livermore Lab. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/02/000214074907.htm
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. "World's Largest Fast-Growth Crystal Grown At Lawrence Livermore Lab." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/02/000214074907.htm (accessed August 20, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Flower Power! Dandelions Make Car Tires?

Flower Power! Dandelions Make Car Tires?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 20, 2014) Forget rolling on rubber, could car drivers soon be traveling on tires made from dandelions? Teams of scientists are racing to breed a type of the yellow flower whose taproot has a milky fluid with tire-grade rubber particles in it. As Joanna Partridge reports, global tire makers are investing millions in research into a new tire source. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Awesome New Camouflage Sheet Was Inspired By Octopus Skin

Awesome New Camouflage Sheet Was Inspired By Octopus Skin

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) Scientists have developed a new device that mimics the way octopuses blend in with their surroundings to hide from dangerous predators. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Green Power Blooms as Japan Unveils 'hydrangea Solar Cell'

Green Power Blooms as Japan Unveils 'hydrangea Solar Cell'

AFP (Aug. 19, 2014) A solar cell that resembles a flower is offering a new take on green energy in Japan, where one scientist is searching for renewables that look good. Duration: 01:29 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins