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Apple goes after Ipad weight loss patent

Carbon fibre casing for tablets
Fri Nov 19 2010, 15:05

THE CAPPUCCINO COMPANY Apple has filed a patent that might show the way to lighter Ipads.

The fruit themed firm has its filing, Reinforced Device Housing, currently in the hands of the US Patent and Trademark Office. In that, it stakes its claim on "A housing for an electronic device or other object formed from a fiber-in-matrix material".

Patent applications are not Harry Potter books, and this is no different. In short, Apple's abstract says that it wants to use a layered fibre in matrix material as a device's skin or spine and sees carbon fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP) as the solution.

"The CFRP could be used on both the spine and the casing, and applied in layers - with the grain running in alternate directions - to create a case that is both light and tough.

"In some embodiments, the spine may be rectangular. The skin may be formed from multiple layers of CFRP type material stacked atop each other," reads the application.

"Each layer may be cut at one or more corners to expose at least a portion of the layer beneath. The skin may thus have an overall cross shape, such that each arm of the cross may be wrapped around a different side of the aforementioned rectangular spine."

Because the device housing will be consistent, it will also be subject to the same levels of thermal expansion, meaning that it will result in a device that is unlikely to crack, according to the patent filing, and create a better fit between parts.

"By virtue of the similar materials used to form the frame and skin, the two components may robustly bond to one another and have similar, if not identical, coefficients of thermal expansion," it reads. It added, "The combination of the robust bond and similar thermal expansion coefficient may permit the embodiment to resist cracking that could plague other housings."

The patent filing, which was first put forward by Apple in 2009, does not explicitly mention the Ipad, but the drawings make the targeted device pretty clear. µ,



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