materials

Zerodur

Zerodur is one of the predominant materials for advanced aerospace manufacturing, as its CTE properties and low helium leak rate makes it the preferred material for many tight-tolerance optics and space-based applications.

8.0

Relative Cost of Material

5.0

Machining Degree of Difficulty

Summary

Zerodur is an optical ceramic made by Schott, known best for its near-zero coefficient of thermal expansion. It is one of the predominant materials for advanced aerospace applications, as its CTE properties and low helium leak rate makes it the preferred material for many tight-tolerance optics and space-based applications. Zerodur is similar in machinability to fused quartz or fused silica, meaning that the only limitations on machining extremely tight tolerance and complex geometry components is the level of expertise that the vendor holds with the material.

Mindrum Precision is among the best in the world at Zerodur machining, and has over 40 years of experience in the material making everything from ring laser gyroscope components to lightweighted mirrors. As a major supplier for a large number of space-based applications, we are machining, polishing, and grinding Zerodur parts all day, every day to produce some of the tightest tolerance components in the business. Click here for our contact information or to request a quote, and we will show you why more engineers are trusting us with their mission-critical needs.

Applications

Since its inception in 1968, Zerodur has been involved in virtually every space-based application that requires precision optical components. Its low rate of helium leakage has made it the only material used for many laser-based applications such as the ring laser gyroscopes used in inertial guidance systems, as well as use in mirrors of all sizes that require minimal CTE to maintain angular requirements. Zerodur is extremely popular in a number of different optics applications, measurement and research applications, and defense applications, among a multitude of others.

Properties

Material PropertyZerodur (Schott)
Density (g/cm^3)2.53
Hardness (Knoop)620
Modulus of Elasticity (GPa)90
Flexural Strength (MPa)10
Poisson's Ratio.243
Dielectric Constant (@1MHz)7.4
Volume Resistivity (ohm-cm @25°C)2.0E13
Coefficient of Thermal Expansion (1 x 10^-6/°C)0.00 +/- 0.1
Thermal Conductivity (W/m K)1.43
Specific Heat (J/kg*K)3347.20
Maximum Working Temperature (°C)600
Index of Refraction1.54
Transmission Band Wavelength (μm)0.3 - 2.5
*Note: Properties vary by manufacturer. The above information should be used for general reference purposes only.

related Materials

  • Alumina – Harder, more corrosion resistant ceramic with similar CTE
  • Macor – Easily machinable ceramic with similar electrical resistivity
  • Aluminum Nitride – Harder, denser ceramic with similar electrical resistivity

With over a half-century of manned spaceflight experience, our parts have been trusted on some of mankind's proudest achievements. We look forward to working with you to bring your next project off of the drawing board and into reality.