Low Temperature Hydrothermal Growth of Quality Lanthanide Vanadate/Oxide Crystals (2007-001)

Market Overview:

This crystal growth approach utilizes a hydrothermal process to produce single crystals of sufficient size for use in a variety of optical laser applications. There is a consistent, increasing demand for higher performance materials in optical applications. The desired materials include high quality single crystals that are capable of being cut, shaped, and polished appropriately for use in non-linear optical lasers.  Traditionally, melt pulling practices are used for growing crystals; however these practices do not produce quality crystals due to oxygen deficiency during the process. Clemson University researchers have developed a low temperature hydrothermal growth technique in which the compounds are produced in water that is heated above the boiling point under pressure. In particular, this approach focuses on producing lanthanide vanadate and lanthanide oxide crystals having the formula LnVO4 and Ln2O3, respectively, in which Ln is selected from a variety of metals and can subsequently be doped with another metal acting as an activator ion if desired. 



Optics, Solid-state lasers; Crystal growth manufacturing



• Employs hydrothermal growth approach, creating commercially viable conditions for mass production of large, quality crystals 

• Requires low temperatures for growth, producing crystals with less thermal strain, fewer defects, and greater homogeneity than conventional growth methods


Technical Summary

Utilizing hydrothermal growth, this approach can be used to grow high quality single crystals of LnVO4, Ln’LnVO4, Ln2O3, and Ln’Ln2O3.  Ln can be a variety of metals, such as, La, Nd, Y and others.  The doping activator ion, Ln’, can also be a variety of similar metals and other metal ions possessing a trivalent charge including Cr3+ and Ti3+. In particular there, was a focus on generating YVO4 and doped YVO4 crystals. The crystal growth process is a low temperature hydrothermal process in which the crystals are being grown in an aqueous solution at a temperature generally within the range of 350oC-600° C under pressure.  Ultimately, Clemson University researchers successfully created a procedure that allows economically efficient mass production of large, high quality single crystals that are suitable for various laser applications. 


Stage of Development

Proof of concept


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Inventors:                      Joseph Kolis, Colin McMillen, Steve Syracuse


Application Type:          Utility


Patent Number:             7,211,234, 7,563,320


CURF Ref No:                03-003, 07-001  



Patent Information:
Advanced Materials
For Information, Contact:
Andy Bluvas
Technology Commercialization Officer
Clemson University Research Foundation
Joseph Kolis
Colin Mcmillen
Photonic Crystals
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