1. Glass can withstand an astonishing amount of pressure. Imagine, for example, a scale that measures the pressure under an elephant’s foot. Glass can theoretically tolerate the pressure of 10,000 elephants stacked on top of that scale – a strength of 10 gigapascals.
2. A sheet of glass is so stable that it would take 20 trillion times the age of the earth to create a visible sag in the thickness of a glass window. This dimensional stability is critical to manufacturers of high-performance devices.
3. You want to talk transparency? The glass used for optical fiber – which forms the backbone of the Internet – is 30 times more transparent than the purest water, and only about 1 percent less transmissive of light than air on a clear day.
4. As for being impermeable – consider the difference between plastic and glass covers on electronics. A molecule of oxygen could pass through a piece of 1-millimeter-thick plastic in about two weeks. That same trip would take 30 billion years through the same thickness of glass. That makes glass an ideal enclosure for advanced display technologies such as OLEDs, which decay rapidly if exposed to oxygen or water.
How does Corning do it? We understand how formulation and fabrication determine the atomic state and structure of a glass. These, in turn, control the mechanical, thermal, and optical properties of the glass.
Our vast knowledge of glass properties, and how glass operates in combination with application requirements, allows us to solve tough customer problems. This same know-how will help the company turn the technologies depicted in “A Day Made of Glass” into realities.