Gorilla glass is more durable and scratch resistance compared to other available alternatives like Sapphire Glass, and Dragontrail Glass.
It is a chemically strengthened alkali aluminosilicate toughened glass.
It is treated by a special technic to make it durable and lightweight.
Corning Glass company makes Gorilla glass.
Why we want such glass?
Mobile devices are getting thinner and their screen is getting bigger.
As per a recent survey, an average mobile phone user drops his/her phone 7 times a year.
Most drops are from less than a height of 1 meter.
Therefore, equipment manufacturers looked for a tougher display that withstands these accidental drops.
Among this Corning glass is the most widely published and most used glass.
Process of Manufacturing
Basically, this is a toughened glass. What makes it unique is the ion process.
Ion exchange is a chemical strengthening process where large ions are “stuffed” into the glass surface to create a state of compression.
The composition of Corning® Gorilla® Glass enables a deep layer of chemical strengthening through an ion-exchange process. In which individual glass parts are cut from the “mother sheet” and it undergoes an ion-exchange process.
The glass is placed in a hot bath of molten salt at a temperature of approximately 400 degrees C. Smaller sodium ions leave the glass, and larger potassium ions from the salt bath replace them.
These large ions take up more room and are pressed together when the glass cools. It produces a layer of compressive stress on the surface of the glass.
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The composition enables the potassium ions to diffuse far into the surface, creating high compressive stress deep into the glass. This layer of compression creates the surface that is more resistant to damage.
Reference: What is it and how is it made?
Origin and History
Corning is developing chemically strengthened glass since 1960. In around 2005 they developed a glass for handheld devices.
This Glass first appeared in 2007. From version 1 to up to the latest version Gorilla Glass Victus, it has incrementally evolved into the tougher glass.
- Apple first ordered to make glass for it’s original iPhone. They were the first to use this tough glass on the iPhone.
- In 2011 the first generation of Gorilla glasses was used by more than 30+ mobile handset manufacturers in 500 types of different models.
- Corning introduced the 2nd version of this glass in 2012 which was 20% thinner than 1st generation glass with the same level of toughness.
- In 2013 the third version was introduced with better scratch resistance.
- Corning announced Gorilla Glass 4 in 2014. It was enhanced with antimicrobial properties in 2015. By that time this glass was used in more than 4 Billion devices.
- Version 5 of this glass was introduced in 2016 which was designed to survive a drop from a distance of 1.2 Meter.
- In 2018 Corning Gorilla Glass 6 was introduced which could survive a 1.6-meter drop.
- In 2020 Corning introduced Gorilla® Glass Victus (Corning Gorilla Glass 7). It is the toughest glass till now which can survive a 2.0-meter drop on a hard and rough surface. In Comparision to ordinary aluminosilicate glass, this glass is 4X times better.
- Samsung Note 20 Ultra is the first mobile phone with Gorilla Glass Victus in the world.
Advantages of Gorilla Glass as per testing
Glasses are tested by various methods such as the Vickers hardness test, Knoop hardness test (microhardness test), drop tower test, Knoop diamond scratch test, retained strength test, slapper test, drop test, and scratch test.
- Previous generations Gorilla Glass 6 survived at a drop of 1.6 Meters, whereas, latest Gorilla glass Victus survived a drop of 2.0 Meters.
Comparatively, regular aluminosilicate glass shatters at a drop of just 0.8 Meter.
- Compared to Gorilla Glass 6, the latest Victus glass is 2X better at scratch at the same price with an improvement of 20% in durability.
- In a Knoop diamond scratch test, ordinary aluminosilicate glass can withstand a load up to 4 Newton. Whereas Gorilla Glass Victus withstands at up to 8 Newton.
- In a retained strength test Victus glass survived at a load of 100Kgf. Whereas competitive Aluminosilicate glass broke at a load of 15.50Kgf.
As per corning’s claim, their Glass excels in drop and scratch tests. Gorilla glass is more scratch resistance than the ordinary strengthened AluminoSilicate glass.
With a thickness of just 0.4mm, this Glass has better scratch resistance and great durability compared to other ordinary glasses.
Due to Corning’s proprietary Fusion-draw Process creates a very thin glass with pristine surface quality and inherent dimensional stability.
That is why you would find gorilla glass 6 in mobile phones many times.
Alternatives of Gorilla Glass
- Sapphire Glass
- Dragontrail Glass
It is an alkali-aluminosilicate sheet glass engineered for a combination of thinness, lightness, and damage-resistance, similar to Corning’s Gorilla Glass.
Sapphire glass is highly transparent to wavelengths of light between 150 nanometers and 5500 nanometers.
In other words, a sapphire glass passes the most basic requirement of an ideal screen.
Advantages of Sapphire Glass
- Sapphire Glass is more scratch resistance compared to other similar glasses.
- This glass is hard and 10 times stronger than steel.
- It is a synthetically produced crystal second only to diamond in its hardness. This makes it extremely durable.
Disadvantages of Sapphire Glass
- Comparing to Corning’s glass it has a disadvantage of having 67% more weight. This glass is more than 1.5 times heavier than Gorilla Glass.
- Sapphire glass is expensive to manufacture.
- Sapphire glass is more suited for those devices with longer lifespan such as watches.
Therefore today’s thinner and lighter mobile device trend, we find few phone with Sapphire Glass. Therefore we find Sapphire glass in watches.
That is why sapphire glass was considered for use in apple watch.
Asahi Glass Company of Japan now known as AGC Inc makes DragonTrail Glass. It is available in variants such as Dragontrail, Dragontrail X, and Dragontrail Pro.
Dragontrail Glass is an alkali aluminosilicate sheet glass engineered for a combination of thinness, lightness, and damage-resistance, similar to Corning’s Gorilla Glass.
It is made by a “Float process” where on molten tin liquid glass is placed and strengthening particles are added. Then this glass is quickly cooled and cut as per requirement.
Advantages and disadvantages of Dragontrail Glass
Dragontrail’s PRO has a higher hardness rating than Gorilla Glass 5, as per Vickers Hardness test rating.
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Corning and Asahi use different standards to measure drop testing, so it’s hard to compare Dragontrail glass vs Gorilla glass. Considering their cost, Chinese cheap mobile manufacturers mostly use DragonTrail Glass.
More than 7 Billion devices are currently using this glass. Gorilla Glass is used for smartphones such as the iPhone and other phones, tablets, laptops, back cover, and wearable devices such as watches.
Apart from mobile devices, Gorilla Glass is being used as the windshield and other glass accessories by JK Jeep Wrangler SUVs, Ford F-150 pickups, Porsche, McLaren, and the Ford GT.
So the next time you buy a mobile phone look for phones with gorilla glass victus, especially if you have a slippery hand.
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