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"...science fiction is sort of like a sociological genome. It's a huge range of possible futures, most of them useless; some vital. You never really know in advance."
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Plani-Glass  
  Transparent and light and has the tensile strength of steel!  

The material was plani-glass, a transparent composition of Webb's invention. Its tensile strength was that of fine-wrought steel, but its lightness greater than that of aluminium. In its normal state it transmitted all the beating waves of space without let or hindrance; when polarized, however, only the wave lengths of light could slide along the latticed crystals. Neither electricity, magnetism, X rays nor cosmic rays could force their lethal energies through the impenetrable barrier.
Technovelgy from Crystalized Thought, by Nat Schachner.
Published by Astounding Stories in 1937
Additional resources -

See also helio-beryllium alloy that also had a transparent variant, as found in Out Around Rigel, a 1931 story by Robert H. Wilson.

Compare to glassite from Brigands of the Moon (1930) by Ray Cummings, artificial transparent element from Last and First Men (1930) by Olaf Stapledon, neo-crystal from Master of the Asteroid (1932) by Clark Ashton Smith, transparent car roof from Sinister Barrier (1939) by Eric Frank Russell, thermalite from Planet of Eternal Night (1939) by John W. Campbell and slow glass from Light of Other Days (1968) by Bob Shaw.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Crystalized Thought
  More Ideas and Technology by Nat Schachner
  Tech news articles related to Crystalized Thought
  Tech news articles related to works by Nat Schachner

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