Structure of nanocrystals in oxyfluoride glass ceramics
The crystallisation of fluorosilicate glasses obtained using high purity SiO2, AlO1·5, CdF2, PbF2, ZnF2 and ErF3 has been investigated. Upon heat treatment, Pb rich nanocrystals form which host most of the rare earth ions. X-ray diffraction (XRD) suggests that the nanocrystals have a fluorite structure but the low volume fraction of the crystals and their small size means that unambiguous identification of the crystal structure is not possible. Therefore, (1-x)PbF2.xErF3 ceramics were fabricated in order to study this phase in more detail. In addition atomistic simulation techniques have been used to investigate the defect chemistry of β-PbF2 in an attempt to clarify the mechanism of incorporation of Er3+ ions in the lattice.
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