Now many people already know what ultra-durable Gorilla Glass is used for touchscreen screens of phones and tablets. But few people know that its history began back in 1962 - it was then that a material called Chemcor was developed. Despite its amazing properties, there was no use for Chemcor at that time, but in the twenty-first century it was remembered again. Some sources claim that Steve Jobs is directly related to the appearance of Gorilla Glass on mobile devices - he allegedly heard about Chemcor and asked Corning to make scratch-resistant glass for the iPhone being developed at the time. Whether it is true or not, it is not known for certain, but it is known for sure that in 2008 the first mobile device with this type of glass was the Nokia N8.
At first, mobile phones did not have any particular problems with scratches - there was an extremely durable, albeit expensive sapphire glass, there were folding models, the screen of which was closed during off-hours, etc., but with the advent of touch displays, the picture changed.
The first displays were resistive and, due to the technology, they had to be a little flexible, therefore, in their manufacture, various types of plastic and glass were used, which were easily scratched by any objects that were in the same pocket with the device.
In the future, displays evolved and capacitive touch screens began to dominate the market, although this did not change the situation with scratches - the top layer of such a screen is covered with the same glass, but with an electrical conductor, and therefore, it was also easily damaged.
Significant changes for the better occurred with the advent of Gorilla Glass (an improved Chemcor composition) - while maintaining the same strength, the glass in the smartphone became thinner (as a result of which the sensor matrix became more sensitive), the optical properties of the display improved, and fingerprints, although they remained on the screen, easily cleaned with a microfiber cloth.
Gorilla Glass is an aluminosilicate glass, a highly scratch and shock resistant material used to protect displays on mobile devices. These unusual properties are achieved by chemical treatment of the material, during which sodium ions are replaced by potassium ions.
Four years later, on January 9, 2012, Corning officially presented the next generation of its product - Gorilla Glass 2. The new version retained the characteristics of its predecessor, but became 20% thinner.
So, Gorilla Glass is almost impossible to inadvertently break and quite difficult to scratch - metal objects and other inhabitants of pockets and bags are not able to do significant damage to the screen. Oddly enough, even such durable glass is scratched, which can be read about on the forums or in reviews for a particular device. Why is this happening?
In order to understand this problem, one must remember what hardness and strength are. Hardness is the property of a material to resist the penetration of another, more solid body into it. In simple terms, hardness is the ability of one material to scratch another. You can determine the hardness of a material using the Mohs scale.
Mohs scale (mineralogical scale of hardness) - a set of reference minerals for determining the relative hardness by scratching. Ten minerals are taken as standards, arranged in the order of increasing hardness.
The hardest mineral on this scale is diamond - it can scratch anything, but it just cuts glass. Gorilla Glass on this scale has a hardness of 6-6.5, and the hardness of metal on it is 5-5.5. The higher the number, the harder the material. Hard scratches soft. With an understanding of these numbers, it becomes clear why you cannot scratch the Gorilla Glass screen with an ordinary nail, keys or scissors - they are simply softer.
Strength - the property of a material to resist destruction under the influence of internal stresses arising under the influence of external forces. Our hero is strong and flexible - he will survive an unwanted blow, but if you wish, you can break him too.
Nevertheless, our hero has an enemy - a small and inconspicuous, widespread quartz. The word "quartz" comes from the German word Quarz, which comes from the Middle High German twarc, which means "hard". On the Mohs scale, the hardness of quartz is 7, which means that if you have at least a little ubiquitous grains of sand in your pocket, they can easily and naturally, and most importantly, absolutely imperceptibly, scratch the screen of your device.
However, not everything is so bad - exactly one year after the announcement of the second version of Gorilla (January 9, 2013), at CES 2013, Corning announced an updated Gorilla Glass 3 protective coating. The new generation of Gorilla Glass 3 is 40% more scratch resistant and 50% more impact resistant.
Today, Gorilla Glass is used in the production of phones and tablets by at least 20% of well-known manufacturers. The total number of models with Gorilla Glass display exceeds three hundred.