When academic research aligns with industry needs, the opportunities are astonishing
Since the beginning of time, fascination with the unknown has launched sailing ships, ignited experiments, and propelled rockets into space. Explorers, whether they gaze out at the horizon or peer into a microscope, have always been relentless about unlocking secrets and opening the world.
That sense of discovery is building for today’s glass scientists. Their stunning innovations in recent years are driving them to explore even more of the material’s vast complexities.
The more they learn, the more glass applications they make possible to enhance daily life.
And scientists are on the cusp of more glass discoveries than ever before.
“It’s a tremendously exciting time for glass research,” says Dr. John Mauro of Corning Incorporated and a world-recognized expert in glass fundamentals.
“Industrial innovations in many other materials, like metals, are slowing down. But designers are finding more and more ways that glass can help them improve their products and connect with customers in new ways.
“That demand is challenging those of us in the research community to keep learning more about every aspect of glass. At the same time, we must train new glass scientists to join us in making these discoveries.”
To dig deeper into the unknown, industrial innovators are encouraging research universities to focus more intently on the science of glass.
Mauro and three of his Corning colleagues — Charles Philip, Daniel Vaughn, and Dr. Michael Pambianchi — recently completed a deep study of the current state of academic glass science research. They uncovered some of the most potential-filled — yet under-explored — opportunities that, if addressed, could help greatly accelerate commercial development of new technical glass.
Consider these challenges that could result in remarkable breakthroughs in the Glass Age.