Porous glasses have attracted great interest in recent years. They can help to improve the accuracy and efficiency of pharmaceutical, chemical, and biological applications, as well as enable entirely new processes and functionalities in a broad variety of other applications. Usage examples include filtering/purification, size exclusions, and the chromatographic separation of enzymes, bacteria, and proteins. A large internal surface enables its use in desiccation processes and provides high binding capacity and usability as a carrier for liquids and other active substances.
Illustrated close up of the structure of glass

As a substrate

When used in solid-phase biotechnological synthesis processes, the interconnecting microstructure and functionalization possibilities of Controlled Pore Glass (CPG) powder enables the reversible binding of enzymes and oligonucleotides, for example. While conventional polymer solutions cannot fulfill increasing requirements regarding porosity, CPG can be produced with tightly controlled pore sizes and pore size distribution, enabling increasingly complex synthesis processes.

Close up of a man filling an e-cigarette or vaporizer

As a carrier for liquids

The high surface area of porous glass powder enables the bonding of large amounts of liquids or other active substances that can be released on demand. Application examples include e-cigarettes or vaporizers, as well as many other applications that require a porous microstructure.

Surgeon performing a medical operation in a surgical theater

As a desiccant

A high specific surface area and silica content of 90% or more enables the binding of large amounts of residual moisture. Application areas for high-performance desiccants made from porous glass include sensitive optical devices used in harsh environments and safety-critical applications that rely on and benefit from highly efficient, miniaturized, and reusable desiccants. For example, the protection of moisture-sensitive electronics in medical devices or defense night vision goggles from the damaging effects of residual moisture/condensation.

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A space capsule returning to Earth.

As a thermal protection system

CoralPor® is designed for use in harsh aerospace conditions and is critical in bringing vehicles back safely to Earth. The glass powder is used as a key component in the thermal protection system of re-entry and hypersonic vehicles because it can withstand extreme temperatures. It can be advantageously employed on the acreage of a vehicle, where a thermally resilient material is required. Also, it contributes significantly to weight reduction due to its low density. CoralPor® is a porous material with a rigid, amorphous microstructure that offers robust mechanical, thermal, and chemical resistance.

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Julia Ettingshausen, Specialist Glass
Julia Reuß

Specialist Glass