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Bill Nye Explains Apple’s Oleophobic iPhone 3GS Screen
Thursday, June 25th, 2009 at 4:31 PM - by Bryan Chaffin
Bill Nye the Science Guy has explained the oleophobic properties of the display on Apple's new iPhone 3GS in an editorial published by Gizmodo. "Grab a hold of one," he wrote, "and for a change, watch almost nothing happen. It's chemistry."
According to Mr. Nye the trick is to add (human) oil-averse properties to the glass. To do this, he wrote, chemists had to get an organic polymer compound that provides the oleophobic quality to stick to inorganic glass.
"This is probably done with a third molecule that sticks to silicon on one side and to carbon-based polymers on the other side," he explained. "Chemical engineers get it to stay stuck by inducing compounds to diffuse or 'inter-penetrate' into the polymer. The intermediate chemical is a 'silane,' a molecule that has silicon and alkanes (chains of carbon atoms)."
Get more in the full explanation at Gizmodo. Bill Nye has a knack for making science both fun and easy to understand, and this piece is an excellent example of that.
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