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Amorphous carbonia

Amorphous carbonia, also called a-carbonia or a-CO2, is an exotic amorphous solid form of carbon dioxide that is analogous to amorphous silica glass. It was first made in the laboratory in 2006 by subjecting dry ice to high pressures (40-50 gigapascal, or 400,000 to 500,000 atmospheres). [1].

While normally carbon dioxide forms molecular crystals, where individual molecules are bound by Van der Waals forces, in amorphous carbonia a covalently bound three-dimensional network of atoms is formed, in a structure analogous to silicon dioxide or germanium dioxide glass.

Mixtures of a-carbonia and a-silica may be a prospective very hard and stiff glass material stable at room temperature. Such glass may serve as protective coatings, e.g. in microelectronics.

The discovery has implications for astrophysics, as interiors of big planets may contain amorphous solid carbon dioxide.


  1. ^ Carbon dioxide glass created in the lab 15 June 2006, Retrieved 3 August 2006
  • Paul F. McMillan (2006). "Solid-state chemistry: A glass of carbon dioxide". Nature 441 (7095): 823. doi:10.1038/441823a.
  • Mario Santoro, Federico A. Gorelli, Roberto Bini, Giancarlo Ruocco, Sandro Scandolo, Wilson A. Crichton (2006). "Amorphous silica-like carbon dioxide" (letter). Nature 441: 857. doi:10.1038/nature04879.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Amorphous_carbonia". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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