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Apple seeks metal experts to craft devices from Liquidmetal

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
Apple is hiring a number of experts on amorphous metals, as the company looks to create hardware constructed from a newly licensed, super-durable custom metal alloy known as "Liquidmetal."

AppleInsider discovered a number of new job listings this week (1, 2, 3) related to developing amorphous metal alloys for use in future Apple products. The company is looking for an amorphous metal development manager and two metal process development engineers to work at its Cupertino, Calif., corporate headquarters.

Apple seeks extremely qualified applications for the positions, as candidates for the engineering roles must have 7 years of experience in manufacturing consumer electronics, while the manager must have 10 years of experience.

The listings refer to the positions as "highly visible" roles at Apple that will involve composition, molding and forming processes with amorphous alloys. The employees will also play a part in secondary operations, such as machining, grinding and finishing of the material.

Apple is looking to fill the positions soon after the company obtained exclusive rights to a metal alloy known as Liquidmetal, an agreement first revealed by AppleInsider in August. Developed at the California Institute of Technology, the material's amorphous, non-crystalline structure makes it harder than alloys of titanium or aluminum.

Apple and the owner of the alloy, Liquidmetal Technologies, entered into an agreement that gives Apple the exclusive right to use the material in the field of electronics. In exchange, Apple paid a licensing fee to Liquidmetal Technologies that was worth at least $10.9 million.



The material can be cast precisely, with little or no need for machining. It was given a trial run by Apple with the SIM ejector tool that has shipped with versions of the iPhone and 3G iPad.
post #2 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The company is looking for an amorphous metal development manager and two metal process development engineers to work at its Cupertino, Calif., corporate headquarters.



Very, very cool. I hope that they advance the SOTA.
post #3 of 49
Maybe they should take a look at former Sandisk engineers since they were the first to use 'liquid metal' in the construction of their media players back in 2006.
"Why iPhone"... Hmmm?
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"Why iPhone"... Hmmm?
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post #4 of 49
I see transparent aluminum screens in Apple's future, or at least transparent metal.
post #5 of 49
Maybe that is what the Steve Jobs ninja stars were made out of.
post #6 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by kspen View Post

Maybe that is what the Steve Jobs ninja stars were made out of.

Forged from Ninja Metal.
post #7 of 49
Apple had a job posting for a carbon fiber manufacturing expert about a year ago. I wonder if they just gave up on the material. Or maybe they've decided that they need Liquidmetal enclosures with carbon fiber internal reinforcement?

Either way, the MacBook Air is getting a little dated. I'd expect the next one to be shockingly thin and light. (Wild guesses: 10mm max thickness, physical keyboard replaced by AMOLED touch-screen keyboard/trackpad combo.)

Sent from my iPhone Simulator

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Sent from my iPhone Simulator

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post #8 of 49
Sounds like Apple could have a T2 Iphone version to compete with the R2D2 Droid 2.
post #9 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

Either way, the MacBook Air is getting a little dated. I'd expect the next one to be shockingly thin and light. (Wild guesses: 10mm max thickness, physical keyboard replaced by AMOLED touch-screen keyboard/trackpad combo.)

For people who touch type (professionals who are productive), any "on screen" keyboards are not so convenient as a physical keyboard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ch2co View Post

Does this mean that future iPhones will bounce of the sidewalk better? That bouncing ball seems a little too bouncy to me.

Try to catch your iPhone after you dropped it.





Basically, what the guy in video says: "our metal is better for the purposes it is designed for than the other metals which are not designed for such purposes".
post #10 of 49
Does this mean that future iPhones will bounce of the sidewalk better? That bouncing ball seems a little too bouncy to me.
post #11 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Newtron View Post

Very, very cool. I hope that they advance the SOTA.

Plus how cool is it to have a title like "Manager of Amorphous Metal Development."
post #12 of 49
Can anyone tell me the part # on that sim ejector? need one for the collection.
post #13 of 49
WOW Bouncy MACS!!!

On a more serious note, I don't get it, the strength of metal is in it's crystalline structure, who can a non crystalline amorphous (no form literally) material be stronger????
post #14 of 49
Apple Job Ad:

"Seeking representatives from the memetic poly-alloy family. We require your expertise in forming knives and stabbing weapons. It is not necessary that you be able to form complex machines or moving parts, only that you be able to mold a trap around any iPhone 5 user that attempts to jailbreak our device while we dispatch the ninjas."
post #15 of 49
Maybe Steve wants to make LiquidMetal throwing stars.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #16 of 49
A new feature for the next iPhone will be the ability to drop your iPhone and catch it while it bounces back up. "drop your iPhone a lot? Don't worry, simply catch it when it bounces back up!" lol
post #17 of 49
I want that in my next MacBook.

iPod nano 5th Gen 8GB Orange, iPad 3rd Gen WiFi 32GB White
MacBook Pro 15" Core i7 2.66GHz 8GB RAM 120GB Intel 320M
Mac mini Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz 8GB RAM, iPhone 5 32GB Black

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iPod nano 5th Gen 8GB Orange, iPad 3rd Gen WiFi 32GB White
MacBook Pro 15" Core i7 2.66GHz 8GB RAM 120GB Intel 320M
Mac mini Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz 8GB RAM, iPhone 5 32GB Black

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post #18 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by myapplelove View Post

WOW Bouncy MACS!!!

On a more serious note, I don't get it, the strength of metal is in it's crystalline structure, who can a non crystalline amorphous (no form literally) material be stronger????

amorphous metals are usually alloys. And alloys are at their best when the component elements are mixed evenly. If allowed to crystallize, different elements in the alloys form small clumps, resulting in weak boundary layers, decreasing metal performance.
post #19 of 49
One quick note for those who may not have gotten it: the ball is not made out of LiquidMetal--the surface it is bouncing on is. All three balls are made from steel.
GIGO. The truth in all of life.
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GIGO. The truth in all of life.
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post #20 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by myapplelove View Post

WOW Bouncy MACS!!!

On a more serious note, I don't get it, the strength of metal is in it's crystalline structure, who can a non crystalline amorphous (no form literally) material be stronger????

Because when a metal or an alloy has crystals in it, the crystal planes can easily slide past each other when the metal is under stress. This makes the metal weaker than necessary. In an amorphous metal there are no crystal planes. It essentially has a liquid "structure" in which the atoms are randomly ordered. That means it has no crystal planes, and no way way for the atoms to easily move, making it very resiliant and strong.
post #21 of 49
Now they just need to perfect "rubberglass".

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #22 of 49
They should hire the same guy that helped Sandisk made the Sansa E2xx series...
proof: http://reviews.cnet.com/mp3-players/...ml#reviewPage1

Quote:
the e200 is still compact and it boasts a liquid-metal backside that will not scratch; likewise, the black plastic on the front does not scratch nearly as easily as the Nano's. In terms of raw size and sleekness, the Nano still reigns supreme.
post #23 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Now they just need to perfect "rubberglass".

That would be great. A break- and scratch-resistance material with great optical qualities.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #24 of 49
post #25 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by myapplelove View Post

WOW Bouncy MACS!!!

On a more serious note, I don't get it, the strength of metal is in it's crystalline structure, who can a non crystalline amorphous (no form literally) material be stronger????

The strength of the willow is that it bends in the wind and therefore doesn't snap.
post #26 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aizmov View Post

I want that in my next MacBook.

It will most likely appear in the hinges...they have always been a laptop's weakest part.
post #27 of 49
Hopefully, this leads to a lighter iPad. Still "too heavy" in the hand after holding it for awhile. Liquid metal + a light composite material = under 1lb. That would be killer.
post #28 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doorman. View Post

For people who touch type (professionals who are productive), any "on screen" keyboards are not so convenient as a physical keyboard.

Go back and read the guy's comment. He didn't mean touch-screen keyboard. He meant AMOLED touch-screen [and] keyboard/trackpad combo. The comma was missing after keyboard, but I thought the gist was clear enough.
post #29 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goocher View Post

Go back and read the guy's comment. He didn't mean touch-screen keyboard. He meant AMOLED touch-screen [and] keyboard/trackpad combo. The comma was missing after keyboard, but I thought the gist was clear enough.

Actually he says "physical keyboard replaced by AMOLED touch-screen keyboard/trackpad combo" which is very clear that he means an AMOLED touch screen keyboard.
post #30 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Plus how cool is it to have a title like "Manager of Amorphous Metal Development."

Somewhat less cool than "Executive Director for Amorphous Metal Strategic Initiatives."

Although vastly cooler than "Assistant Amorphous Metal Cataloger."
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They spoke of the sayings and doings of their commander, the grand duke, and told stories of his kindness and irascibility.
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post #31 of 49
Really interesting would be to know the heat dissipating properties of LM?
post #32 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by BB Sting View Post

I see transparent aluminum screens in Apple's future, or at least transparent metal.

that would be nice, having bullet-proof aluminum oxynitride for the screen. hopefully it comes down in price from $15/sq. in. yowch!
post #33 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgl323 View Post

A new feature for the next iPhone will be the ability to drop your iPhone and catch it while it bounces back up. "drop your iPhone a lot? Don't worry, simply catch it when it bounces back up!" lol

Remember those super balls, the ones that bounce around and you cant keep up with them?
I can see a guy running around trying to catch his iPhone or Macbook.
post #34 of 49
Maybe Apple isn't thinking consumer product YET. Military computing with lighter & stronger hardware are options.
post #35 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by desarc View Post


I think you win the prize. Thought of T2 immediately. I was thinking my phone could turn into a knife for self-defense and heal itself if I break it. Don't drop it in molten steel, though.
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I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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post #36 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goocher View Post

Go back and read the guy's comment. He didn't mean touch-screen keyboard. He meant AMOLED touch-screen [and] keyboard/trackpad combo. The comma was missing after keyboard, but I thought the gist was clear enough.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anmarkle View Post

Actually he says "physical keyboard replaced by AMOLED touch-screen keyboard/trackpad combo" which is very clear that he means an AMOLED touch screen keyboard.

Goocher, as anmarkle said:
"physical keyboard replaced..." - means: no physical keyboard. Regardless of any punctuation you assume was missing.
post #37 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by tsa View Post

Because when a metal or an alloy has crystals in it, the crystal planes can easily slide past each other when the metal is under stress. This makes the metal weaker than necessary. In an amorphous metal there are no crystal planes. It essentially has a liquid "structure" in which the atoms are randomly ordered. That means it has no crystal planes, and no way way for the atoms to easily move, making it very resiliant and strong.

I think I better go and read some basic material science text... thanks btw...

any suggestions?
post #38 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aizmov View Post

I want that in my next MacBook.

I want that on my sons next little league bat or my Apple branded driver.
post #39 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by xsu View Post

amorphous metals are usually alloys. And alloys are at their best when the component elements are mixed evenly. If allowed to crystallize, different elements in the alloys form small clumps, resulting in weak boundary layers, decreasing metal performance.

In general, are alloys crystalline in structure? How about the old time ones which were forged on an anvil? If there's no amorphous metals in the mix, does that usually weaken an alloy?

Do you know of any good general info on the topic?
post #40 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

The strength of the willow is that it bends in the wind and therefore doesn't snap.

Then the whole stupid willow tree is blown over and lands on the roof of your garage.
Beautiful tree, chainsaw food if found growing any where near my house.
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