patent number 5126200
Small diameter fibers formed from the use of laser energy and gaseous reactants and are disclosed. Also disclosed is an apparatus and method for the formation of continuous, substrate free, crystalline or amorphous fibers. Materials which can be formed into small diameter fibers include boron, silicon, germanium, zinc, tungsten, cadium, gallium, thenium, and compounds and mixtures thereof. The fibers have a diameter of about 10 micrometers to about 170 micrometers. The apparatus for producing the fibers includes a laser, a reaction chamber, and gas supply means. The laser beam has a focal point adjusted to coincide with the tip of the growing fiber, the focal point of the laser creating a region of elevated temperature at the fiber tip.
E. I. Du Pont de Nemours and Company (Wilmington, DE)