Oxide glasses under pressure: Recent insights from experiments and simulations

Tao Du, Søren Strandskov Sørensen, Theany To, Morten Mattrup Smedskjær*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
28 Downloads (Pure)


Deciphering the structure-property relations of densified oxide glasses is a problem of longstanding interest. For example, it is important for understanding the fracture mechanism under sharp contact loading as well as fabricating glasses with tunable physical characteristics. Recent advances in both experimental and simulation techniques have prompted research breakthroughs in understanding the response of glasses to high pressure. In this Perspective, we first briefly discuss the facilities for the high-pressure treatment of glasses, including in situ and ex situ investigations. The recent work on pressure-induced structural changes of archetypical oxide glass families (silicates, germanates, borates, aluminates, phosphates) is discussed and compared to the changes in macroscopic properties induced by densification, as densification treatment can be used to produce oxide glasses with improved hardness, stiffness, and toughness. We also discuss the new insights from atomistic simulations combined with topological analysis tools to unravel the densification mechanism of oxide glasses on the medium-range order length scale. Drawing on these recent studies, we clarify how densification treatment has proved to be an important tool to both understand the disordered nature of glasses and tune their physical properties, although many open questions and challenges remain that require further investigations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number170901
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2 May 2022


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