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Is glass a true solid?

22 January 2015

Researchers from the University of Bristol have teamed up with Kyoto University to answer whether glass ever becomes truly solid and stops flowing.

Researchers in Bristol’s Schools of Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics led by Dr Paddy Royall and Dr Karoline Wiesner, teamed up with Professor Ryoichi Yamamoto of Kyoto University under the Bristol-Kyoto agreement to answer whether glass ever becomes truly solid and stops flowing. They used information theory to discover that the size of the solid-like regions of the material increases over time and that atoms in the solid-like regions organize into geometrical shapes, such as icosahedra.  Such icosahedral configurations were predicted in 1952 by Sir Charles Frank at the University of Bristol’s HH Wills Physics Laboratory.

The research is published this week in Nature Communications.

Read the press release

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