Glass. Metals & Oxides. Periodic Table. And what gives wine bottles and other glass bottles their colors.
Colored glass wine bottles help to prevent the wine inside from being broken down by UV radiation (read how in the 1-Minute NomNom “Have you ever tasted light?“). Companies also sometimes use colored bottles to create an identity for their marketing and branding. What gives these bottles their colors?
Glass is mostly (60-80%) made up of silicon dioxide, which is made primarily from sand. The purer the sand, the more colorless the glass will be; if there are impurities, the glass will become colored. Adding impurities such as metals and metal oxides during glass production makes it possible to control both the colors and their intensity.
Adding iron (II) oxide makes the bluish-green beer bottles. Using iron (II) oxide and chromium produces the intense green of many wine bottles. Wine bottles are also often amber, the result of a combination of sulphur, iron and carbon. Cobalt oxide is used when we want blue bottles or decorative glass pieces. The possibilities for colored bottles are limited only by the elements in the periodic table!
Soda bottles used to be glass (some still are), and some companies used very distinctive colored bottles. Take a look at their colors and tell us which metal or metal oxide they might have used!
Like this? Make my world colorful and like me to discover more. All you need is a minute a day to explore the world’s marvels through the phenomenon of food!