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Patricia Daukantas

Plasmonics in Rennaissance glassblowing


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Renaissance glassblowers may not have known about plasmonics, but they used at least one technique from the field to produce stunning results. This red carafe from Nuremberg, created circa 1700, is made of gold-doped glass. The gold particles, approximately 10 nm in diameter, fill only about 10–6 of the volume of the carafe’s glass, but they make the glass into a Maxwell-Garnett composite material with properties very different from those of their constituents.

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