From the eyeglasses on your face to the lightbulbs in your room, it’s impossible to imagine a world without glass. It’s the defining material of the human era, and it has left behind a trail of awe-inducing scientific discoveries. But there are still plenty of mysteries about this amazing substance – for example, how it makes the switch from liquid to solid.
In the meantime, there’s no shortage of bottle-related terms to confuse and confound. Fortunately, you’ll find some of the more important ones explained below – though this list is by no means comprehensive.
The term “bottle episode” is often used to describe episodes that take place entirely within one setting, such as a single room or apartment. These episodes are typically slower and more introspective than other television shows, and they can help a show’s characters explore their relationships. They’re also a great way to add depth to an otherwise simple plot.
While many television shows have tried their hand at a bottle episode, some of the best are found in animated series like Community and Mad Men. The format works well for these shows because the animation process makes it easier to shift the camera around a character’s environment. However, it’s important for producers to know that the bottle episode doesn’t work as well in live-action television, where a director must constantly move the camera between different locations to keep the action moving.
To make a bottle, sand or other raw materials are heated to a viscous state and then cooled fast enough to prevent the molecules from forming into the regular crystal arrangement of a solid. This gives the bottle its unique qualities – it’s neither a liquid nor a solid, but it does have some of the properties of each.
For instance, when glass is heated to high temperatures, its molecules rearrange themselves into a disordered state that’s somewhere between the fluidity of a liquid and the rigidity of a solid. This creates a stable form that’s both strong and clear, making it an ideal container for holding liquids and other chemicals.
There are literally thousands of types of bottles. Some are shaped for specific uses, such as Bordeaux bottles that have sides that taper down to a short cylindrical section and a curved shoulder for catching sediment. Other types are designed for specific drinks, such as Champagne bottles that have a thicker body to withstand the pressure of carbonation.
The most common type of bottle, however, is the PET bottle, which is made from polyethylene terephthalate. This chemical is derived from petroleum hydrocarbons and processed into long molecular chains that can be used to build bottles. The PET bottle is usually clear, but it can be made in any color or tint – and it’s also incredibly lightweight. It’s estimated that more than 350 million bottles of PET are sold worldwide each year.