Darshana and Arun Varshneya Frontiers of Glass Technology Lecture 

Xiang-Hua Zhang, research professor, University of Rennes 1, France


Title: Recent research trends of chalcogenide glasses and ceramics for infrared photonics and energy applications


Abstract: Chalcogenide glasses have been studied since several decades for infrared transmission and the most important commercial application is infrared optics for thermal imaging. Compared to the most used germanium optics, chalcogenide glass optics have two important features, which are the lower cost, especially for high volume applications, and the lower sensibility to temperature variation. Molded chalcogenide optic is one of the key elements, which are boosting the massive application of thermal imaging. These current and future applications necessitate cost reduction and materials with higher performance. Recent innovation in glass fabrication process and in the development of highly efficient optics, for example, with gradient refractive index will be presented.

 Chalcogenide glasses have relatively narrow and adjustable bandgap width. Through controlled crystallization, it is possible to obtain composite semiconducting materials with intern and self-organized p-n junctions, resulting in exceptional photoelectric properties. Their potential applications for energy conversion via photocatalytic or photovoltaic effect will be summarized.


 Biography: Since October 2002, Xiang-Hua Zhang is research professor at CNRS (French National Center for Scientific Research) – University of Rennes I and director of the laboratory of glasses and ceramics.   His prior professional experience was chief technology officer for UMICORE IR Glass from 2001-2002.  Zhang earned his EMBA at ISM (International School of Management), Paris, New York in 1999, attained his Ph.D. at University of Rennes I, France in 1988, and was a Master student at University of Rennes I, France in 1985.


Prof. Zhang’s awards include the Research Award of the Foundation of the University of Rennes 1, November 2016; “Grand prix Foundation EADS(now Airbus)” of the French Academy of Sciences, November 2012; “Grand Prix YVAN PEYCHES” of the French Academy of Sciences, November 2004; “Innovation and defense award” given by M. Alain Richard (French Minister of Defense), January 1998; and, “IBM Young scientist” given by M. Hubert Curien (French Minster of Research) January 1990.


Zhang holds 17 patents, has presented 82 invited presentations in international congresses, and 305 publications in international peer reviewed journals.