Corning's super-thin, 100-micron, flexible Willow Glass can be adapted to high-volume, low-cost, roll-to-roll manufacturing processes, which hasn't been possible with glass. Now samples are available, it's being applied to solar panels and touch panels, as well as displays, and Corning is helping customers retrofit or build new lines to integrate the material into manufacturing. (Source: Corning)
AnandY, glad this was helpful info for you. I think it's a good example of what can be done with enough resources: brains, money, expertise and time. As far as I've been able to determine, this glass is unique. It will be interesting to see how this affects future designs.
The super –thin flexible glass is definitely a plus for Corning. As one would have it, it will bring about a few changes that will see better mobile phone covers as well as other electronic applications given that it is made adaptable to high-volume as well as low-cost manufacturing processes. It will also come as quite appealing to most customers given that it can be wrapped around electronic products owing to it being thin
Ann the update is fantastic. The extra thin glass can be used in an array of design work to enable an improved functioning of the devices. The compact nature of the glass will enable more flexibility in the field of design.
It was interesting to find out that, since roll-to-roll manufacturing is very new in companies that use glass in their products, this is turning out to be as big a deal as the material itself, maybe bigger.
Thanks, Al. I did this update because the first time I reported on this, I was very interested in what would happen after some of Corning's customers started playing with the material and figuring out what they could do with it.
I find the conformable concept interesting in general. Here we have conformable displays. Over in flexible electronics, as we reported here http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1392&doc_id=265097 there are conformable printed electronics.
These new 3D-printing technologies and printers include some that are truly boundary-breaking: a sophisticated new sub-$10,000, 10-plus materials bioprinter, the first industrial-strength silicone 3D-printing service, and a clever twist on 3D printing and thermoforming for making high-quality realistic models.
Using simulation to guide the drafting process can speed up the design and production of 3D-printed nanostructures, reduce errors, and even make it possible to scale up the structures. Oak Ridge National Laboratory has developed a model that does this.
Engineers need workhorse materials with beefy mechanical properties for industrial designs made with 3D printing. Very few have been designed from the ground up for additive manufacturing, but that picture is beginning to change.
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