A Look at How GT Advanced Makes Sapphire Glass for Smartphone Displays

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #26
    I'd pay $10 for one of those sapphire screens. Shoot that's as cheap as those crappy Chinese screen covers :eek:
     
  2. Alphabetize macrumors 6502

    Alphabetize

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2013
    #27
    I'm not all that interested in keeping my screen scratch free, I'd really like my screen to be shatter resistant/proof instead.
     
  3. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #28
    My watch with sapphire glass is now about 14 years old and looks like new.

    Just thought... If it was a Samsung "smart" watch I'd have charged it about 5,000 times by now:D Thank heavens it's not.

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    Interesting article at theregister:

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/11/05/apple_sapphire_factory_in_arizona/

    Summary: Sapphire Glass is very expensive to make because total production is very low. If someone built a factory making massive amounts of it, the production cost would be dramatically reduced. And Apple could provide the money for such a factory which could produce massive amounts of sapphire glass at a cost that is tiny compared to current prices (and Apple could have an exclusive contract making its cost a fraction of the cost of anyone else, until some other company has the same idea).
     
  4. HiRez macrumors 603

    HiRez

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Western US
    #29
    Since most applications seem to be rectangular slices, it seems odd they'd make the raw block a cylinder. Couldn't they just make the crucible a cube shape?

    The screens they produce look quite thick to me, and very highly reflective.
     
  5. jetlife2 macrumors regular

    jetlife2

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    Location:
    Cincinnati, Oh
    #30
    Relatively Straightforward!

    ...compared to what? Dilithium Crystal mining?

    Quote

    The process is relatively straightforward: a sapphire seed, about the size and shape of a hockey puck, is placed at the bottom of a single-use molybdenum barrel called a crucible. The crucible is then filled with a mixture of condensed corundum -a crystalline form of aluminum oxide- and a material called "crackle," sapphire material left over from previous runs. The full crucible is then placed inside the furnace, where it sits atop the "finger," a small liquid helium-cooled platform that prevents the sapphire seed from melting too early. The furnace is sealed, the air is evacuated, and the temperature is brought up to 2100 degrees Celsius to allow the materials to melt together. (The video says 2200, but that's wrong. It's 2100, for all you making-sapphire-at-home hobbyists.) The material is put through a series of cooling cycles over the next 16 or 17 days, during which time the sapphire slowly crystallizes from bottom to top. The end result is this: a 115kg cylindrical section of industrial sapphire called a "boule."

    Well speaking for myself, it is true, I have all these ingredients to hand; as well as the means to machine a solid 115kg cylinder of sapphire at the end; but maybe that's unusual...

    /<eek!>
     
  6. kdarling macrumors P6

    kdarling

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2007
    Location:
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    #31
    Seems like many applications are round. Camera lens protection. Touch Id button cover. Watch crystal.

    Plus a round crucible is easier to heat evenly, and to be built to withstand pressure.

    Watch crystals are much thicker than smartphone layers.

    A good sapphire watch crystal is about 5mm thick, so it won't shatter if dropped.

    The Gorilla Glass 2 used to protect smartphone displays is only 0.8mm thick. That's about six times thinner.

    They say mass production would drop a front cover from about $30 to $10-$15. That's still much higher than the $3 for Gorilla Glass.
     
  7. furi0usbee macrumors 68000

    furi0usbee

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    #32
    Well, you better not be using Gorilla Glass... I've been walking around with my shattered screen (with clear tape) for about a month. Don't want to drop the $150.00 it will cost to replace at Apple. For now, it will do. And my iPhone 5 was just about 32 days old. I got iOS 7, then dropped my phone. It was truly a breakthrough in OS design.

    So GG is far from shatter resistant/proof. If they can come up with scratch resistant *and* shatter proof, I'd pay $50 more for that screen.

    ----------

    No, he's not talking into the mouse is he?
     
  8. aznboi91 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2012
    #33
    Why protect only the screen? might as well wrap the whole damn thing in sapphire... lol

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    I bet you its not even shatter proof... sapphire is sharper than glass once shattered... it isn't a fun experience....
     
  9. MacMulti macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2013
  10. greg555 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #35
    One downside of sapphire is that it has a higher index of refraction than glass. So there will be more reflections than glass unless they add an AR coating. And AR coatings tend to be fingerprint magnifiers.
     
  11. TrashCanBin macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2013
    #36
    And messages magically disappear again. The Nazi regime is strong within these walls.
     
  12. ZipZap macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    #37
    Too brittle
     
  13. chr1s60 macrumors 68000

    chr1s60

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Location:
    California
    #38
    Samsung is clearly interested from all those users scratching screens by turing their phones over on the screen to silence it ;)
     
  14. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #39
    Not bad at all...

    Now....... case manufactures will have just lost business, except do those non-smart phone users (who cares about them right ??), every manufacture getting on board here with sapphire glass, and the case market take a serious nose dive. straight down...'

    (oh .. The stock market just crashed) ...

    Drop tests will be useless, if entire phones could be made this way, not just the screens...... You'd see people trying to dent their phones in all directions deliberately..

    Seriously..... this is all just one reason,, just NOT to be proactive and use a case... Why bother, when manufactures can take care of this for us with gorilla glass, and now this .....

    I dunno who to blame here.... manufactures for looking out for us, or the users who like to toss them around like a toy....

    Now, if we do that do a a car..... people get mad .... Shame, the same anger doesn't work for a phone ..... :)....

    I'd still get one, if i had to get a phone, but upgrade to one ? not a chance, cos i take care of my phone.
     
  15. HurryKayne macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    #40
    I wonder if sapphire would able to fit with bendable,foldable displays.
     
  16. tommyboy21 macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #41
    Cool video! And my guess is we'll see this is in the "iWatch" first.
     
  17. rodriguise macrumors regular

    rodriguise

    Joined:
    May 6, 2011
    Location:
    Sparks, NV
    #42
    Siri was recorded in 2005.
     

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