Refractive index database

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Optical constants of SF6 (Sulphur hexafluoride)
Vukovic et al. 1996: n 0.6–1.3 µm

Wavelength: µm

Complex refractive index (n+ik)[ i ]

n   k   LogX   LogY   eV

Derived optical constants

Dispersion formula [ i ]


Conditions & Spec sheet

n_is_absolute: true
wavelength_is_vacuum: true
temperature: 15 °C
pressure: 101325 Pa


Dispersion formula is based on refraction measurement at only two wavelengths: 0.633 µm and 1.3 µm


1) D. Vukovic, G. A. Woolsey, G. B. Scelsi. Refractivities of SF6 and SFO2 at wavelengths of 632.99 and 1300 nm, J. Phys. D: Appl. Phys., 29, 634–637 (1996)
2) M. Sneep and W. Ubachs. Direct measurement of the Rayleigh scattering cross section in various gases, J. Quant. Spectrosc. Radiat. Transfer 92, 293-310 (2005)
*Ref. 2 provides a dispersion formula based on data from Ref. 1


[Expressions for n]   [CSV - comma separated]   [TXT - tab separated]   [Full database record]


Sulfur hexafluoride, SF6

Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) is a colorless, odorless, non-toxic, and non-flammable gas that is renowned for its excellent electrical insulation properties. It is often used in high-voltage electrical equipment as an insulating and arc-quenching gas because of its ability to cool and extinguish electrical arcs. This makes SF6 essential for applications such as switchgears, circuit breakers, and transformers. The gas is also utilized in the magnesium industry to prevent the oxidation of molten magnesium and in the semiconductor field for plasma etching processes. Due to its high global warming potential, there are ongoing efforts to find alternatives and reduce the amount of SF6 released into the atmosphere. In optical applications, it can be used for its dense, heavy properties, which can modify the speed of sound and refractive indices of the gases it's mixed with.

Other names

  • Sulfur(VI) fluoride
  • Elagas
  • Esaflon
  • Hexafluoro-λ6-sulfane

External links