- Pp. 83-105 (23)G. Delaizir, A. P. Gonçalves and A. Pradel
The first reports on chalcogen and/or chalcogenide glasses date from the beginning of the XX century. However, it was only in the 1950s that started the systematic study of chalcogenide glasses. Presently the research on this type of glasses is very active due to their great potential for practical use. The unique photoconductive properties, infrared transparency, ionic conduction, phase-change phenomenon and electrical and thermal transport properties of chalcogenide glasses make them highly attractive for a wide range of applications, from photoreceptors to high-density optical memories, infrared optical components, ionic sensors or thermoelectric devices. </p><p> This chapter intends to give a brief overview on the uniqueness properties of chalcogenide glasses. It starts with a picture of their structure and electronic structure, followed by their glass formation characteristics, a description of their physical properties and finalizing with a non-exhaustive presentation of their applications.