Transparent Silver, The Future of Mobile Touch Screens


The Gist

Research at the University of Michigan has found a way to use transparent layers of silver to create more durable, flexible mobile touch screens.


Silver, when you hear that word the first thing that pops into your head will most likely be some overly priced jewelry piece. What if in the not too distant future, silver could mean a mobile touch screen.

This past week, the University of Michigan has announced that they have found a way to use thin layers of silver to create  touch screen materials that are prone to tarnishing and even air exposure. Known as transparent silver, this is the thinnest layer of silver that can revolutionize how touch screens and flexible displays are produced.

But why would anyone need to replace touch screens with silver? Well, like everything in life, when something becomes in high demand a new wave of alternative resources must be explored and tested in order to continually ensure this demand is met. In an age that has gone completely mobile, it is no wonder that the demand for touch screen material has skyrocketed.

According to 2017 studies by Pew Research Center, “The vast majority of Americans – 95% – now own a cell phone of some kind. The share of Americans that own smart phones is now 77%.”With the mobile device market expanding rapidly, so has the demand for the material for mobile device screens which is what ultimately caused such sharp price increases. Mobile touch screens are usually  made from indium tin oxide.

Through the combination of silver with a small portion of aluminum, the University of Michigan has found a way to make anti-reflective coats that make this layer of metal 92.4% transparent and tarnish proof. This silver coating could even provide faster computing power as the silver can guide light 10 times faster than other metal waveguides.

Although still in testing mode, the ultrathin silver could become a great replacement for current touch screens. At Affant Communications, we are always seeking technological innovation and encouraging exploration beyond what is already defined. With over 20 plus years of experience as managed service providers, we know what it takes to stay ahead in this business. To find out more about our IT solutions and services, or to simply learn more, speak with an Affant specialist at 714.338.7100.



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