Sapphire is grown by various methods from seed samples. Sapphire can be polished to a high standard, but as it is the second hardest mineral on Earth it must be subject to high forces to get the polish. Therefore, windows made from Sapphire must have a thickness to diameter ratio of at least 10:1, that is, greater than 10mm thick for a 100mm diameter disk. Sapphire is inert and resistant to attack from most processing environments, such as hydrofluoric acid. Sapphire has a melting point over 2000°C with a high thermal conductivity makes it suitable for use in harsh environments.
Sapphire is ideal for use as a window where high radiation resistance is required from the UV to about 5µm. It can be used to form doublet lenses with Silicon and Zinc Selenide for the MWIR (3 to 5µm). These optics can be used to, for example, detect missile plumes that emit the 3-5 µm range and shorter, wavelengths. The detection of muzzle flash from a sniper can be 'seen' by use of optics in this MWIR waveband. The detection of snipers is of great importance in, for example, Afghanistan, as many military lives are being lost to snipers. The gun flash from a rifle has a distinct spectral distribution from the hot gases that are emitted. These gasses are, for example, CO and H2 together with CO2, N2 and H2O that produce distinct emissions in the 3 to 5µm band.
The range of Stock Sapphire Windows listed here are C-Cut grade. Stock windows can be edged to small diameters or machined to square and rectangular shapes at short notice. Please enquire.
5 arc min
Edging down to smaller diameters, square and rectangular apertures.
Complete mounting options.
Glass to metal seals.
Sub-assemblies for high pressure enviroments.