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Custom Barium Fluoride

Barium Fluoride lenses

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Knight Optical is at the forefront of providing Barium Fluoride (BaF2) optical components, including BaF2 lenses and BaF2 windows, specifically to meet the diverse needs of our clients.

Barium Fluoride is renowned for its excellent transmission capabilities, exceeding 90% between 0.2 to 10µm, making it perfectly suited for a wide spectrum of applications, from vacuum ultraviolet to longwave infrared regions.

Our range of Barium Fluoride optical components are designed for applications requiring high resistance to high-energy radiation, such as gamma and x-rays. Whether you require BaF2 lens for precision imaging or a Barium Fluoride window for protective viewports in harsh environments, our bespoke solutions cater to your specific requirements.

Knight Optical also offers custom BaF2 optical components with optional broadband antireflective (BBAR) coatings, improving optical performance within specific wavebands. This customization extends across various forms, including spherical lenses, aspheric lenses, and prisms, ensuring you receive components that perfectly align with your application’s demands.

Discover how Knight Optical’s custom BaF2 solutions can improve your project. Contact us today to explore our Barium Fluoride lenses and windows, and learn more about how our offerings suit your optical needs.

Barium Fluoride lenses

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    Optical Properties and Metrology Testing

    The refractive index of Barium Fluoride and its application adaptability is highlighted by its use in medical imaging, particularly in thermology and thermography for the detection and monitoring of various conditions. Its high radiation resistance also makes BaF2 ideal for cooled thermal imaging systems, infrared spectroscopy, and high-energy neutron detection​​​​​​.

    Our in-house metrology laboratory ensures that every Barium Fluoride lens and window meets the highest quality standards, guaranteeing components that not only meet but exceed your expectations. For those curious about what Barium Fluoride is used for, its applications are as diverse as they are critical, spanning from medical imaging to spectroscopy and beyond​​​​​​. You can find out more about our testing facilities here.

    Below is a brief summary of barium fluoride’s optical properties, a full data sheet is available here.

    Transmission Range0.15 to 12µm
    Refractive Index1.45 @ 5µm
    Density4.89 g/cm3
    Melting Point1386°C
    HardnessKnoop 82 with 500g indenter
    Operating Temperature< 800°C in dry environment
    DiameterWindows: < 5mm to 200mm, Lenses: < 5mm to 60mm+
    Form error (@633nm)< 0.25 waves
    Centration/parallelism< 1 arc minute
    Scratch/dig< 60/40
    Typical coatingsSingle sided BBAR @ 2-10µm

    Uncoated, 1mm thick

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Barium fluoride (BaF2) is a crystalline material commonly used in the optical industry due to its wide transmission range, from ultraviolet to infrared light. It is particularly valued for its use in applications requiring deep ultraviolet and infrared transmission, such as in high-energy physics, astronomy, and lithography. Barium fluoride is used to manufacture optical components like lenses (BaF2 lens), windows (BaF2 window), and prisms that are crucial in spectroscopy, thermal imaging, and UV laser systems.

    Barium fluoride is chosen for optical components due to its high transmission in the UV and IR spectral regions, low refractive index, and resistance to high-energy radiation. These properties make BaF2 lenses and windows ideal for use in environments exposed to wide temperature ranges and varying wavelengths. Additionally, BaF2’s low water solubility and high resistance to thermal shock contribute to the durability and longevity of optical devices in challenging conditions.

    The index of refraction of barium fluoride varies with wavelength, but at the sodium D-line (589 nm), it is approximately 1.48. This low refractive index allows for minimal light dispersion, making BaF2 an excellent material for optical systems requiring clear, sharp imaging across a broad spectrum of light.

    Yes, barium fluoride lenses and windows can be customised to meet specific application requirements. Customisation can include specific dimensions, thicknesses, surface coatings, and shapes to fit particular optical systems. Knight Optical, for instance, offers custom BaF2 optical components tailored to the needs of various industries, ensuring optimal performance in unique operating environments.

    Barium fluoride components perform exceptionally well in extreme environments due to BaF2’s notable chemical stability, resistance to thermal shock, and ability to operate over a wide temperature range. These properties make BaF2 optics suitable for harsh conditions, such as in high-energy physics experiments, aerospace applications, and cryogenic environments.

    Barium fluoride optical components can be purchased from specialised suppliers like Knight Optical, which provides a wide range of BaF2 products, including lenses, windows, and custom optics. They offer high-quality BaF2 components tailored to specific industry requirements, along with expert advice to help select the best optical solutions for your project’s needs.

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    We are ready and waiting to answer any queries you may have about barium fluoride.


    Health and Safety

    Barium fluoride is a hazardous material and precautions should be taken when handling, you can find our barium fluoride SDS here.

    Temperature – Dry Environment

    In a dry environment it can be used up to 800°C. 

    Temperature – Moisture

    When exposed to moisture, BaF2 degrades at 500°C, especially its performance in the vacuum ultraviolet (VUV) range.

    Typical Applications

    Scintillator for Caesium Iodide

    Scintillator Crystal

    BaF2 is the fastest known scintillator material, and therefore is used to produce fast-acting, radiation resistant scintillation detectors used to detect x-ray and gamma rays by converting this high-energy radiation into lower energy photons which are emitted in the UV bands centred at 195nm and 220nm.

    nuclear applications of barium fluoride

    Nuclear Applications

    Barium fluoride scintillators also emit at a slower rate at 310nm. BaF2 scintillators are used for Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and nuclear physics applications.

    Germanium for Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR)

    FTIR Spectroscopy

    Due to barium fluorides impressive transmission range from 200nm up to 12 micron, it is well suited for use in FTIR spectrometers. Knight Optical can provide stock and custom standard or drilled BaF2 cell windows.

    Silicon Optics for Infrared Filter Substrates


    Barium fluoride viewports are often used in IR thermography due to their transmission in the MWIR and LWIR wavebands.

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    With our in-house state-of-the-art metrology laboratory you can be confident that your optical components will meet your requirements. You can find out more about our testing facilities here.

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