Apple's new patent reveals techniques to attach sapphire to electronic devices

Apple's new patent reveals techniques to attach sapphire to electronic devices
Apple has filed a patent application that shows how the tech giant is able to attach sapphire to its devices. At the same time, the application hints at ways that Apple might use sapphire in the future. Currently, Apple has employed it on its home button to protect the TouchID fingerprint scanner. As the second hardest material after diamonds, sapphires can be used in a number of ways on future versions of the Apple iPhone. One such use would be as a material to replace or enhance the Gorilla Glass used to make the display. The material was first used as a lens cover for the rear-facing camera on the Apple iPhone 5.

Another possible use would be to help dissipate the heat that is produced by the phone's processor. One quality of sapphire is its ability to spread heat, and using a sapphire-made mount for the processor would take advantage of this property. The patent's focus, however, is on how to securely fasten the material to the handset.

One method is to mix another material with a lower melting point, like metal, into an aperture formed in the sapphire substrate. When cooled and hardened, the metal can be used to connect to other parts by soldering, welding, or by other means. Another method uses a molding, like injection molding, to add a second material to the sapphire substrate. Using notches, steps or other designs, the sapphire part would be fastened to the device.

Last month, Apple received a patent for the use of sapphire on flexible displays. The month before, the Cupertino based firm signed a contract with GT Advanced Technologies for the long term supply of the sapphire material used in the production of Apple's devices. The sapphire material will be produced by GT using its equipment and operators situated in an Apple facility in Mesa.

Apple has applied for a patent on various ways to attach sapphire to an electronic device

Apple has applied for a patent on various ways to attach sapphire to an electronic device


source: USPTO via AppleInsider

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11 Comments

1. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Sounds pretty good imo. Looking forward to what they'll do with the design of the new iPhone.

4. Sauce unregistered

Likewise. Design is a big deal closer for me. GS5 (☞゚ヮ゚)☞ here I come; if the design is a disappointment.

5. Finalflash

Posts: 4062; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Absolutely nothing, the new iPhone will only have a larger size as its only appeal and probably more cpu/gpu. This patent is either to troll or deliver in 2016.

9. Sauce unregistered

What do you go by? Your analyst name.

2. taz89

Posts: 2014; Member since: May 03, 2011

How does one get a patent on using a certain material and how they will use it. Might aswel patent how one cuts potatoes into fries lol

3. Sauce unregistered

There are patents for that. You'd be surprised what you can learn from Modern Marvels on History channel.

6. taz89

Posts: 2014; Member since: May 03, 2011

Lol shocker not really, the crap that apparently can be patented is a joke and how it apparently benefits consumers I will never know.

10. Sauce unregistered

Yea, the patent practice is general is a load of crap.

7. Alan01

Posts: 570; Member since: Mar 21, 2012

The patent, as explained inthe story, is for the ways to attch the material to an electreonic device. Regards, Alan F.

8. tedkord

Posts: 17094; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

This actually sounds like a valid patent claim. It's a specific method for attaching the sapphire, not a patent on attaching sapphire.

11. CEMIII

Posts: 110; Member since: Jun 26, 2013

Yup drill through a rock put some electrictrodes through it, sotter it down. A billon dollar patent from Apple I did it 1st LOL

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