5 Feb '18
Scientists at MISiS, a top Russian tech university based in Moscow, have developed technology which has the capacity to slash the cost of smartphone displays manufacture.
At the core of today’s smartphone displays production are artificial sapphires (monocrystalline corundum) obtained through chemical processes from high-purity aluminum oxide. With the lack of domestic large-scale production of this raw material Russian manufacturers have to import it at a high price. To address the problem MISiS researchers have come up with a cost-effective and safe method of high-purity aluminum oxide production.
The patented import substitution technology is now expected to provide enough raw material to meet the needs of domestic producers in monocrystalline corundum as the main component of LEDs and protective glass for modern gadgets.
MISiS’ prototype high-purity aluminum oxide production unit can operate with a capacity of 1.0-1.2kilos/day. A pilot run gave raw material with at least 99.995% of the key component in it.
The developers also underscore environmental safety and no danger to human wellbeing in this technology, an aspect hardly achievable when using existing production techniques. It appears to be energy-saving, too. With its relative simplicity and inexpensiveness of equipment used the technology is also believed to be easily scalable, which is expected to help meet most of the Russian demand for artificial sapphires.