Posted on November 06, 2013 by Minerals Make Life
Apple announced that they will begin manufacturing sapphire glass, used in the newest iPhones, in the United States. This is an expansion of domestic manufacturing for the company, having announced earlier this year that it would assemble its new Mac Pro computers in a Texas plant.
In a statement made to Pocket Lint, Apple said that “We are proud to expand our domestic manufacturing initiative with a new facility in Arizona, creating more than 2,000 jobs in engineering, manufacturing and construction.”
So what, exactly, is sapphire glass? It is a transparent, crystalline form of aluminium oxide (alumina) that is extraordinarily hard and scratch-resistant. Apple currently uses this glass for iPhone cameras and home buttons. Alumina facilities exist throughout the southern United States, creating an easily accessible supply chain for the Arizona facility.
This close relationship between manufacturing and supply chain is the ideal. By streamlining the federal permitting process new mining projects would be able to more efficiently come online, contribute to a domestic manufacturing resurgence and create desperately needed jobs in both industries – mining and manufacturing.