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Suggestions on making my own conductive glass?

  1. Jun 17, 2013 #1
    Hi all, I have been researching conductive glass in my quest to create a solar powered 3D printer :) :).

    So, I have contacted a few manufacturers in china who sell ITO glass, but it is still a little pricey, and I was wondering what the forums thoughts are on making my own ITO glass. I have seen a few videos that suggest using stannous chloride, but I wonder how effective it would be to do it from scratch?

    Any suggestions??
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 18, 2013 #2


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    Why would you need conductive glass for a 3D-printer with solar cells? Do you want to print the parts of the printer, too?

    Conductivity+transparency together are very uncommon...
  4. Jun 18, 2013 #3
    Making my own conductive glass is more of a learning process, I think it would be a really neat project, and I have time to kill since it's summer :)
  5. Jun 23, 2013 #4
    Hi, ITO is not a glass but a crystalline substance., just one of the many representatives of the family of transparent conductive oxides (TCO). Indeed it is used for making a glass surface conductive, as in the case of solar cells and liquid crystal displays but this is still a glass with a crystalline substance on top of it, not a conductive glass. Examples of a conductive glass can be found among amorphous alloys.
  6. Jun 24, 2013 #5
    Hey Alkim, thank you for the clarification. However..i'm still confused.

    So iridium tin oxide is a substance, and it can be put on top of a regular piece of glass and coat it so that it becomes conductive (is that correct??)

    However...what you are saying is that actually conductive glass is made of an amorphous alloy (which it seems i will have to google for more info :)

    Am I correct?
  7. Jun 24, 2013 #6
    Hi DeeJayCruiser,

    That's right, indium-tin oxide, i.e. In2O3:Sn or ITO is a crystalline substance which is transparent and conductive so that it is used to make transparent electrodes by coating normal glass. Some other transparent conductive oxides are SnO2:F (FTO), ZnO:Al (AZO) and ZnO:Ga (GZO).
    Metalic glasses are a completely different thing. They are just amorphous metal alloys, which conduct electricty but they are not transparent to visible light.
    I guess that what you refer to as "conductive glass" is just ITO-coated glass.
  8. Jul 21, 2013 #7
    The easiest way to make conductive and transparent cover on the glass is to cover with ultrathin film of silver
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