|Crystallization · Crystal growth
Recrystallization · Seed crystal
Protocrystalline · Single crystal
|Nucleation · Crystal
Crystal structure · Solid
|Methods and technology|
|Boules · Bridgman-Stockbarger
Czochralski process · Fractional crystalliz. · Frac. freezing · Hydroth. synthesis · LHPG · Iodide process
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2009)|
The Bridgman–Stockbarger technique is named after Harvard physicist Percy Williams Bridgman and MIT physicist Donald C. Stockbarger (1895–1952). They are two similar methods primarily used for growing single crystal ingots (boules), but which can be used for solidifying polycrystalline ingots as well.
The methods involve heating polycrystalline material above its melting point and slowly cooling it from one end of its container, where a seed crystal is located. A single crystal of the same crystallographic orientation as the seed material is grown on the seed and is progressively formed along the length of the container. The process can be carried out in a horizontal or vertical geometry.
The difference between the Bridgman technique and Stockbarger technique is subtle: while a temperature gradient is already in place for the Bridgman technique, the Stockbarger technique requires pulling the boat through a temperature gradient to grow the desired single crystal.
When seed crystals are not employed as described above, polycrystalline ingots can be produced from a feedstock consisting of rods, chunks, or any irregularly shaped pieces once they are melted and allowed to resolidify. The resultant microstructures of the ingots so obtained are characteristic of directionally solidified metals and alloys with their aligned grains.
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