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Corning exec lets slip the gorillas of war, calls sapphire expensive, heavy, environmentally... - Page 2

post #41 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

Obviously, since Apple uses Sapphire to protect the iPhone's camera lens, it lets light through JUST FINE.

Obviously, since Apple is heavily investing in Sapphire production, Sapphire will be just as cheap as Gorilla Glass, and just as quickly mass produced.

Corning better get on the Sapphire Bandwagon. But then it may not have enough money nor technology to do so. They are already complaining about the cost. Obviously, Apple can lower the cost immensely.

 

Explain how Apple can lower the cost of Sapphire immensely when it requires 4000% more energy to produce and requires diamond saws to cut and expensive machinery using diamond polishes to finish the cut pieces  to a usable state?  Did someone at Apple that i haven't heard of go to Hogwarts and can just wave their wand over a large pile of Aluminium Oxide and hey presto, produce a large pile of finished sheets at next to no cost?

 

Corning don't rely solely on Apple as a customer for Gorilla glass - Samsung is a big customer also.  In fact, Samsung own 7.4% of Corning.  Other phone makers like Nokia also use Gorilla glass.

 

Sapphire is brittle compared to glass, so it isn't 'stronger' and doesn't offer a way to make a screen thinner and lighter.  Really hard substances tend to be brittle.  Diamond may be extremely hard, but it is also brittle.  The toughest mineral is jade (nephrite) so if you wanted to make a hammer, or a phone screen that would best resist breaking, you would use jade.  Unfortunately nephrite isn't transparent.

post #42 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeSmoke View Post

Hey Corning, GG might make some really nice baking dishes.

Yep, maybe that would be better than Pyrex™, I had a massive one of those split in two heating a load of gravy one year, never trusted them since, always use Le Creuset now. The latter also double as a physical work out just lifting them! 1smile.gif
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post #43 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post
 

 

With a market valuation of nearly $30 Billion, the cost is not a problem. More than likely, they don't have the IP.

 

I doubt it. Sapphire glass is not new, and Corning has been around a long time. I am sure it has manufactured it themselves. I suspect you have it in reverse. Anybody with money who can buy the needed resources probably can create Sapphire, whereas Corning holds the IP to Gorilla Glass. Nobody can compete with Corning on the glass front. Further, Corning most likely has a lot invested in Gorilla Glass, and from its statements thinks it is a better product. 

 

I think what Apple is doing is what it did when it started making aluminum products. Namely, buy up most of the manufacturing capacity to make such products, which made it very hard for its competitors. I still don't think you can get a notebook from anybody else that is made from a single block of aluminum. Right now Corning sells to everybody. Apple wants to distinguish its products. It is buying up all the resources necessary to make Sapphire in significant quantities. Whether it is a better alternative than Gorilla Glass probably depends on what criteria Apple is applying. 

 

It does, however, seem like Apple is investing a ton of money into producing the material. Apple engineers are pretty smart. I doubt they are sinking the money into manufacturing the material on a grand scale if they do not think it offers some benefit over Gorilla Glass. 


Edited by TBell - 3/5/14 at 5:52am
post #44 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post

Explain how Apple can lower the cost of Sapphire immensely when it requires 4000% more energy to produce and requires diamond saws to cut and expensive machinery using diamond polishes to finish the cut pieces  to a usable state?  Did someone at Apple that i haven't heard of go to Hogwarts and can just wave their wand over a large pile of Aluminium Oxide and hey presto, produce a large pile of finished sheets at next to no cost?

Corning don't rely solely on Apple as a customer for Gorilla glass - Samsung is a big customer also.  In fact, Samsung own 7.4% of Corning.  Other phone makers like Nokia also use Gorilla glass.

Sapphire is brittle compared to glass, so it isn't 'stronger' and doesn't offer a way to make a screen thinner and lighter.  Really hard substances tend to be brittle.  Diamond may be extremely hard, but it is also brittle.  The toughest mineral is jade (nephrite) so if you wanted to make a hammer, or a phone screen that would best resist breaking, you would use jade.  Unfortunately nephrite isn't transparent.

I suspect you are not far off the mark with Hogwarts. Apple's R&D team probably really do know some magic we are not aware of in all this.
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post #45 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


Yep, maybe that would be better than Pyrex™, I had a massive one of those split in two heating a load of gravy one year, never trusted them since, always use Le Creuset now. The latter also double as a physical work out just lifting them! 1smile.gif

 

That would have sucked. I would second that the Le Creuset cast iron stuff is great especially the stuff actually made in France. I always joke that you could stop a bullet with that stuff, but it really isn't a joke. 

post #46 of 95

Corning sounds like Carriage manufacturer in the early 1900's when the automobile was in its infancy. How many of the carriage manufacturers survived the industrial revolution?

post #47 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post


Sapphire is brittle compared to glass, so it isn't 'stronger' and doesn't offer a way to make a screen thinner and lighter.  Really hard substances tend to be brittle.  Diamond may be extremely hard, but it is also brittle.  The toughest mineral is jade (nephrite) so if you wanted to make a hammer, or a phone screen that would best resist breaking, you would use jade.  Unfortunately nephrite isn't transparent.

This post epitomizes the confusion that arises every time material science issues are raised. Brittleness and strength are entirely different and relatively independent properties. Strength, itself, refers to multiple properties depending on the stress state in question. Toughness - usually referring to fracture toughness, is just one parameter that falls under the umbrella of "strength". You simply cannot conflate all these terms and then make blanket statements about the material response.
post #48 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by adhir View Post

I think a major part of this is the support structure Apple provides through their retail stores. If you have a broken iPhone, make an appointment, walk in, they fix it, many times free, you go home. Where do you go with your cracked Samsung?

The same places that the vast majority of people that don't live near a Apple store go to get their iPhones fixed.
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post #49 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by NOS2U View Post
 

Corning sounds like Carriage manufacturer in the early 1900's when the automobile was in its infancy. How many of the carriage manufacturers survived the industrial revolution?

 

 

You do understand that Sapphire Glass was invented in 1902 right? Corning invented Gorilla Glass in the 1960's and created a brand new type in the last couple of years that it is just bringing to market called Gorilla Glass 3. Corning hardly sounds like a carriage manufacturer. It, however, sounds like a company defending its product, which it views as superior. At least Corning is not doing a Steve Ballmer where he just laughs at the iPhone. Corning actually brings up flaws about Sapphire. I will be interested to learn how Apple handles the flaws. 

post #50 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by DogCowabunga View Post
If your sapphire plant is solar powered, the amount of energy required isn't that much of an issue.

 

I disagree.  The energy is still being used, and it's coming from somewhere. The solar field being used to power a sapphire plant could alternatively power a gorilla glass facility with many times the output, or an equivalent gorilla glass facility with surplus power to provide to the grid, offsetting fossil fuel production elsewhere.

post #51 of 95

Sapphire isn't just used for screens, it's also used in some LEDs. Maybe Apple is preparing for the mass manufacture of an LED-based product?

 

http://www.compoundsemiconductor.net/csc/indepth-details/19736669/Sapphire-substrates-to-lead-future-LED-market.html

post #52 of 95

Gorilla Glass is extremely flawed.  The reason is GG is covered by a thin layer of material that keeps the glass relatively stronger than regular glass.  But that thin layer material is not very scratch resistant.  And once that thin layer is scratched the entire plate is severely weakened.  On the other hand sapphire is not a layered product.  The entire crystal is strong and resists scratches much better.

 

Gorilla Glass = man wearing a bullet proof suit.  Once the suit is compromised the glass easily cracks

 

Sapphire = block of iron

post #53 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by muppetry View Post


This post epitomizes the confusion that arises every time material science issues are raised. Brittleness and strength are entirely different and relatively independent properties. Strength, itself, refers to multiple properties depending on the stress state in question. Toughness - usually referring to fracture toughness, is just one parameter that falls under the umbrella of "strength". You simply cannot conflate all these terms and then make blanket statements about the material response.
Quote:

 

Corning tests have shown Gorilla Glass to be able to withstand 2.5 times more pressure

 

You have gone to great lengths to give the impression that I am wrong without actually stating whether or not it would be easier or harder to break a very thin Sapphire screen vs a Gorilla glass one of the same thickness.

post #54 of 95
Quote:
"When we look at it, we see a lot of disadvantages of Sapphire versus Gorilla Glass," Tripeny said. "It's about 10 times more expensive. It's about 1.6 times heavier. It's environmentally unfriendly. It takes about 100 times more energy to generate a Sapphire crystal than it does glass. It transmits less light which...means either dimmer devices or shorter battery life. It continues to break."

 

None of that could be true if Apple decides to use Sapphire for their screens.  Corning is just jealous.

post #55 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post
 



Maybe Corning should thank Apple for making them relevant again, instead of coming across like some whiny b!tch?  :/

 

Save your breath.  Corning is biting the hand that feeds it, exactly like every whiny beotch on the planet.

 

Corning should be THANKING Apple, and not whining about Apple.  They have no gratitude whatsoever.

post #56 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by sog35 View Post
 

Gorilla Glass is extremely flawed.  The reason is GG is covered by a thin layer of material that keeps the glass relatively stronger than regular glass.  But that thin layer material is not very scratch resistant.  And once that thin layer is scratched the entire plate is severely weakened.  On the other hand sapphire is not a layered product.  The entire crystal is strong and resists scratches much better.

 

Gorilla Glass = man wearing a bullet proof suit.  Once the suit is compromised the glass easily cracks

 

Sapphire = block of iron

 

Where do these bizarre interpretations come from? Scratch resistance correlates purely with surface hardness, not any bulk property. The surface properties of GG just represent a modern version of thermal toughening, using ion exchange instead of thermal expansion to set the outer layer into a permanent state of compressive stress that offsets any externally imposed tensile (crack-opening) stresses. As a secondary effect, increased, not decreased, scratch resistance results from that process, though it's still not as hard as sapphire.

post #57 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by muppetry View Post


This post epitomizes the confusion that arises every time material science issues are raised. Brittleness and strength are entirely different and relatively independent properties. Strength, itself, refers to multiple properties depending on the stress state in question. Toughness - usually referring to fracture toughness, is just one parameter that falls under the umbrella of "strength". You simply cannot conflate all these terms and then make blanket statements about the material response.
Quote:

 

Corning tests have shown Gorilla Glass to be able to withstand 2.5 times more pressure

 

You have gone to great lengths to give the impression that I am wrong without actually stating whether or not it would be easier or harder to break a very thin Sapphire screen vs a Gorilla glass one of the same thickness.

 

On the specific (and undefined) property of "breakability", you completely failed to define how you are trying to break it (bending, impact, penetration etc.), and what  you are considering it to be mechanically attached to. My point was that you appear unaware that each of those responses is controlled by different properties. GG is weaker in every measure of strength, by which we mean that it has lower elastic moduli (bulk compressive, tensile, shear), lower ultimate strength (tensile, shear), and lower hardness.

 

What GG does have is much higher strain to failure in tension and shear (this is what brittleness refers to), meaning that while it takes less force, you can bend a thin sheet of GG much further than a similar sheet of sapphire. That may make it better or worse, depending on the application. If  you want a bendy phone, or the phone is simply not very rigid, then it may be preferable, but if the phone structure is stiff (like an iPhone) then the screen may never see significant bending and so the other properties of sapphire easily win.

post #58 of 95
Why is (almost) everybody here STILL capitalizing sapphire?
post #59 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by TeaEarleGreyHot View Post


I disagree.  The energy is still being used, and it's coming from somewhere. The solar field being used to power a sapphire plant could alternatively power a gorilla glass facility with many times the output, or an equivalent gorilla glass facility with surplus power to provide to the grid, offsetting fossil fuel production elsewhere.
I disagree. If they are manufacturing a product that is energy neutral because it is solar powered, then it doesn't matter how much more efficient production of another material is. The impact would be the same for either, 0. The the energy being used is irrelevant because it is relatively infinite. The reason it matters to Corning is because their plants are not energy neutral. So in reality, Apple's Safire plant if used to replace GG would off set fossil fuel production by eliminating their GG production orders. And if they were building a solar farm for a plant that requires less energy, it would be smaller anyway.
post #60 of 95
Corning has a good product. I don't know what they are worried about. It's not like GG won't still be used by Apple on things like iPads and what not.

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post #61 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by muppetry View Post
 

 

On the specific (and undefined) property of "breakability", you completely failed to define how you are trying to break it (bending, impact, penetration etc.), and what  you are considering it to be mechanically attached to. My point was that you appear unaware that each of those responses is controlled by different properties. GG is weaker in every measure of strength, by which we mean that it has lower elastic moduli (bulk compressive, tensile, shear), lower ultimate strength (tensile, shear), and lower hardness.

 

What GG does have is much higher strain to failure in tension and shear (this is what brittleness refers to), meaning that while it takes less force, you can bend a thin sheet of GG much further than a similar sheet of sapphire. That may make it better or worse, depending on the application. If  you want a bendy phone, or the phone is simply not very rigid, then it may be preferable, but if the phone structure is stiff (like an iPhone) then the screen may never see significant bending and so the other properties of sapphire easily win.

 

 

Let's look at the common ways an iPhone screen is damaged.

 

1) The molecules throughout the glass substrate layer is under large compressive stresses. Any scratch must be able to overcome the residual stress forces to grow. This is what gives gorilla glass the scratch resistance. Tiny sand and rocks in my pocket continuously cause microscopic scratches on the surface. These scratches affect the compressive forces the molecules are under and creates areas where new cracks can propagate i.e points of failure.

 

2) If I drop my iPhone and it lands on the corner of the screen, the entire glass substrate can fail catastrophically.

 

With these two examples in mind, which material provides superior performance - gorilla glass or sapphire?

post #62 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post

Why is everybody capitalizing sapphire all of a sudden?

Correction: almost everybody.

Essentially three reasons:

random lettering as done by a cap-sized gorilla;

sounds better phone-ethically;

a gorilla knows a Master when it sees One.
post #63 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by MykeM View Post

Exactly. I've no doubt that someone would've found the use for Gorilla Glass eventually but as it stands it was Apple/Steve Jobs. It is in Corning's business interest to downplay Sapphire but when one protests too much, it usually means that feathers are being ruffled (to be followed, no doubt, by gorilla glasses being thrown against the wall).

Funny and true. Corning seem to be protesting too much. If they were confident, they wouldn't need to be so defensive. Maybe sapphire will turn out to be the gorilla in the room.
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post #64 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Esoom View Post

That may have a bit to do with income disparity as well.  iPhone users have a bit more income, so they probably get their phones fixed quickly as they can afford to do so.

And are more likely to own horses.
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post #65 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

I don't think it's about scratches. Based on Apple's history, they like to make things thinner and thinner and thinner...
If this stuff is stronger, you can get the same strength in a thinner sheet.

How long before the iPhone itself is thinner than a human hair?
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post #66 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

It's good that Corning brought all this important info to Apple's attention- they can now just write-off their investment and throw the whole plan in the toilet because of this enlightenment. Whew, glad Corning was able to warn Apple before they launched anything! It's not like Apple knows what the **** it's doing or anything, right? They just thought sapphire "sounded cool" and decided to invest hundreds of millions of dollars into production and their future multi-billion product line on a whim. 

No, more likely Apple researched and tested every fucking aspect of the material, and decided, after thousands of hours of hands-on assessment from hundreds of experts, that the pros outweighed any cons. Guess what? It was also "10x more expensive" to make the first iPhone out of glass instead of plastic- but that's what Apple did, because it was superior, and they were better for it. Corning can trash-talk all they want, but you can't change history- and history is that Apple put corning on the map, and made them the behemoth they are today. Show a bit of fucking gratitude. 

And in one fell swoop, you have encapsulated everything that was on my mind when reading this article. Thanks for the mind-reading!
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post #67 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by NOS2U View Post
 

Corning sounds like Carriage manufacturer in the early 1900's when the automobile was in its infancy. How many of the carriage manufacturers survived the industrial revolution?

Um... you can be dismissive, but Corning does know a thing or two about glass.

 

It's a pretty classic and classy -- and, I might add, in the field of glass, an amazingly innovative -- company that has been around since 1851. Apple or not, I don't think they're going away any time soon.

post #68 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post

Why is everybody capitalizing sapphire all of a sudden?

Correction: almost everybody.

I think the forum software is auto-capitalising; I had to correct to lower-case.
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post #69 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBell View Post


You do understand that Sapphire Glass was invented in 1902 right? Corning invented Gorilla Glass in the 1960's and created a brand new type in the last couple of years that it is just bringing to market called Gorilla Glass 3. Corning hardly sounds like a carriage manufacturer. It, however, sounds like a company defending its product, which it views as superior. At least Corning is not doing a Steve Ballmer where he just laughs at the iPhone. Corning actually brings up flaws about Sapphire. I will be interested to learn how Apple handles the flaws. 

Corning effectively are doing a Ballmer and laughing at Apple. Given the context and Apple's reputation, they are saying that Apple are idiots to be using sapphire. Time will tell if they're right.
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post #70 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

Gorilla Glass is extremely flawed.  The reason is GG is covered by a thin layer of material that keeps the glass relatively stronger than regular glass.  But that thin layer material is not very scratch resistant.  And once that thin layer is scratched the entire plate is severely weakened.  On the other hand sapphire is not a layered product.  The entire crystal is strong and resists scratches much better.

Gorilla Glass = man wearing a bullet proof suit.  Once the suit is compromised the glass easily cracks

Sapphire = block of iron

Sapphire that thin is absolutely layered.
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post #71 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by RalphMouth View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by muppetry View Post
 

 

On the specific (and undefined) property of "breakability", you completely failed to define how you are trying to break it (bending, impact, penetration etc.), and what  you are considering it to be mechanically attached to. My point was that you appear unaware that each of those responses is controlled by different properties. GG is weaker in every measure of strength, by which we mean that it has lower elastic moduli (bulk compressive, tensile, shear), lower ultimate strength (tensile, shear), and lower hardness.

 

What GG does have is much higher strain to failure in tension and shear (this is what brittleness refers to), meaning that while it takes less force, you can bend a thin sheet of GG much further than a similar sheet of sapphire. That may make it better or worse, depending on the application. If  you want a bendy phone, or the phone is simply not very rigid, then it may be preferable, but if the phone structure is stiff (like an iPhone) then the screen may never see significant bending and so the other properties of sapphire easily win.

 

 

Let's look at the common ways an iPhone screen is damaged.

 

1) The molecules throughout the glass substrate layer is under large compressive stresses. Any scratch must be able to overcome the residual stress forces to grow. This is what gives gorilla glass the scratch resistance. Tiny sand and rocks in my pocket continuously cause microscopic scratches on the surface. These scratches affect the compressive forces the molecules are under and creates areas where new cracks can propagate i.e points of failure.

 

2) If I drop my iPhone and it lands on the corner of the screen, the entire glass substrate can fail catastrophically.

 

With these two examples in mind, which material provides superior performance - gorilla glass or sapphire?

 

(1)  No contest - even with the surface compressive layer of GG, sapphire is much harder and much more scratch resistant.

 

(2)  Assuming that the impact damage of the kind that you describe arises from tensile failure during the dynamic loading with quasi-uniaxial stress, sapphire has the higher ultimate tensile and shear strength, and will survive higher stresses than GG. But note that the induced stresses are also a function of the elastic moduli (the stress/strain behavior prior to the onset of plastic processes) of both materials involved in the impact, and so it also depends on other factors - most importantly the physical properties of the surface being impacted.

post #72 of 95
Similar arguments were made for glass in iPod and iPhone early era, but processes improved, driven in large part by Apple. Since Gorilla Glass is no longer a differentiator, it is commodity and as such less attractive to premium brands like the iPhone. (Remember owning the market in mini hard drives and iPod memory.)

Recall Cook's view that wearables need something to make them desirable to wear, glass and steel are way too utilitarian. However, sapphire is a very very attractive label and feature ( like diamond and ruby) and can make early wearables very attractive, distinctive, and differentiating. As wearables popularity grows and functions draw a larger measure of value, then perhaps sapphire will not be as valuable feature, but by then the performance and costs of sapphire will be very attractive and equal or surpase glass. Then onward to iPhones, iPod touches, ipad mini, ipad air, even MacAir with Apple able to own the technology and market, like aluminum today, providing premium brand differentiation for quite some time at the manufacturing level.

My bet is Corning sees this is investing heavily in Sapphire etc., but I suspect Apple and it's partners have technology lead, investment lead, and will be making money to re-invest while Corning and others play catchup. Rapid followers or copycats, Samsung anyone, are trying to trying to get into this by getting a piece of GT action, clone their technology, etc. Not that they know what, why, or when, but in reaction to Apple. PC industry got excluded when Apple owned the aluminum process for laptops and still owns the iMac large bonded large screen. .

By the way, this is not Job's but rather Cook supply side strategies and Cook is very much engaged.
post #73 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

Gorilla Glass is extremely flawed.  The reason is GG is covered by a thin layer of material that keeps the glass relatively stronger than regular glass.  But that thin layer material is not very scratch resistant.  And once that thin layer is scratched the entire plate is severely weakened.  On the other hand sapphire is not a layered product.  The entire crystal is strong and resists scratches much better.

Gorilla Glass = man wearing a bullet proof suit.  Once the suit is compromised the glass easily cracks

Sapphire = block of iron

Sapphire that thin is absolutely layered.

 

I think he probably meant that sapphire is homogeneous and isotropic whereas GG is not, rather than that the sapphire would not be part of a laminate.

post #74 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

Corning effectively are doing a Ballmer and laughing at Apple. Given the context and Apple's reputation, they are saying that Apple are idiots to be using sapphire. Time will tell if they're right.

It's moves like this when I don't blame Google for making Android, either you're busy getting or you're busy getting got, Corning just got got. It's always best to do the screwing first.
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post #75 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post
 

 

Explain how Apple can lower the cost of Sapphire immensely when it requires 4000% more energy to produce and requires diamond saws to cut and expensive machinery using diamond polishes to finish the cut pieces  to a usable state?  Did someone at Apple that i haven't heard of go to Hogwarts and can just wave their wand over a large pile of Aluminium Oxide and hey presto, produce a large pile of finished sheets at next to no cost?

 

Corning don't rely solely on Apple as a customer for Gorilla glass - Samsung is a big customer also.  In fact, Samsung own 7.4% of Corning.  Other phone makers like Nokia also use Gorilla glass.

 

Sapphire is brittle compared to glass, so it isn't 'stronger' and doesn't offer a way to make a screen thinner and lighter.  Really hard substances tend to be brittle.  Diamond may be extremely hard, but it is also brittle.  The toughest mineral is jade (nephrite) so if you wanted to make a hammer, or a phone screen that would best resist breaking, you would use jade.  Unfortunately nephrite isn't transparent.

That diamond saw is the old tech. Apple specifically invested in GT Advanced that's going to run their Mesa facility due to their having acquired the new beam tech for shearing off Saphire sheets.

http://www.macrumors.com/2013/11/12/apples-new-manufacturing-partner-gt-advanced-uses-particle-accelerator-to-cut-sapphire-glass-production-costs/

post #76 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by jfc1138 View Post

That diamond saw is the old tech. Apple specifically invested in GT Advanced that's going to run their Mesa facility due to their having acquired the new beam tech for shearing off Saphire sheets.
http://www.macrumors.com/2013/11/12/apples-new-manufacturing-partner-gt-advanced-uses-particle-accelerator-to-cut-sapphire-glass-production-costs/

I think a diamond saw might be just a little bit cheaper than a particle accelerator. lol.gif
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"Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example" Mark Twain
"Just because something is deemed the law doesn't make it just" - SolipsismX
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post #77 of 95

Not sure if Sapphire crystal, not glass, is a better face material than Gorilla Glass. GG has been refined over the years to improve its strength and longevity while in use as a face material. It is made in large qualities, the basic processes not not super complex, but I expect the details of applying the surface compression layer may be a bit detail oriented. Treating glass surfaces to be in compression is a very old technique, First seen in tempered windshields for cars and later in chemically strengthened glasses. The drawback to the technique is that once the surface compression layer has been breached by a scratch the inner zone which is in tension fails rapidly. Once saw a demonstration of chemically strengthened glass-ceramic, broke in tension at over 400,000 psi (2.7 GPa), or as strong as good unidirectional carbon fiber composite. The failure was spectacular, just a cloud of dust floating in the room which was preceded by a very loud bang. The GG is fairly hard, most glasses are harder than typical stuff like car keys, you might find in a pocket, so is much more resistant to scratches then the plastic predecessors and strong enough for routine use as a screen material.

 

Single crystal sapphire has been grown in large boules for many decades, but this is done at high temperatures and once formed the material has to be sliced and polished into facesheets. A much more intensive process then forming thin glass sheets from glass and surface treating it. I have no details on the process that GT is using for Apple to form the boules, but there are methods to make things cheaper and more efficient. There may also be improvements for the slicing and polishing methods, in the end I expect the sapphire sheets to be much more expensive than the GG, but if the absolute difference is on the order of $10 per phone, that is of not much importance to an iPhone. If the difference is $100 more that would be tougher to justify. The transmission losses through a thin layer of sapphire is nothing, but antireflection coatings have a much longer history on glass and may require significant development, but they may already have some from work on the camera covers. The Sapphire has larger fracture toughness than GG, but that only matters once the GG surface layer is breached. GG will have high strength, sapphire higher hardness. Only three common materials are going to scratch a sapphire surface, sandpaper, either alumina (poly crystalline sapphire) or carborundum (SiC) based, and sapphires, rubies and diamonds, none of which are likely to be in your pocket. Since my screen has collected zero scratches in the 2 years I have had my phone, going sapphire would not be a big improvement for me. 

 

Sapphire laminates are used in protective windows due to the high cost of full thickness sapphire windows, 1-inch or so thick. Placing a thin, 1/8-th inch thick layer of sapphire on glass can save a lot of money. Given the cost of thinning the sapphire down to even 1mm wafers I am not sure going to 0.25mm wafers than laminating to glass would be cost effective. 

 

Edit to add, if the particle accelerator slicer (previous post) works on sapphire like silicon, perhaps GT can make thin slices cheap enough to laminate.


Edited by wally626 - 3/5/14 at 10:18am
post #78 of 95
Dear Mikey Campbell. Just comment to your sentence:

"As Corning stands to lose a major source of revenue if Apple decides to switch away from Gorilla Glass in favor of its own sapphire-based solution, the company is understandably a detractor of the burgeoning tech. "???

You are wrong here. Corning yearly revenue is 8.000 Mio USD and Gorila from apple is only about 150 Mio. This is in your opinion a major source??? Corning has four independent revenue pillars and Gorila is just one small revenue stream for Corning. Corning does not need to be negative on Sapphire. In opposit. They even admited that Sapphire is nice sexy name :-)

Best
post #79 of 95

Dear Mikey Campbell. Just comment to your sentence:

"As Corning stands to lose a major source of revenue if Apple decides to switch away from Gorilla Glass in favor of its own sapphire-based solution, the company is understandably a detractor of the burgeoning tech. "??? 

You are wrong here.  Corning yearly revenue is 8.000 Mio USD and Gorila from apple is only about 150 Mio. This is in your opinion a major source??? Corning has four independent revenue pillars and Gorila is just one small revenue stream for Corning. Corning does not need to be negative on Sapphire. In opposit. They even admited that Sapphire is nice sexy name :-)

Best

post #80 of 95
How about this: As I understand it, when an iphone screen gets scratched it is not necessarily the glass that scratches but the anti-smudge film that is on the screen that scratches. So from a different perspective, how does sapphire handle fingerprints and other things then normal glass? If due to the surface hardness of sapphire it does not hold on to grease and oil and other things that go from our hands to the screen and therefore is much more easily cleaned and you have the benefits of hardness without having to add that extra layer of smudge proof film, and that leads to a much more satisfied customer.
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