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German Researches Use Candles to Create Fingerprintless Glass

by Emily Price | December 4, 2011December 4, 2011 8:14 am PST

We may one day have smartphones that don’t pick up fingerprints. German researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer research have been working on a new “superamphibiotic” coating for screens that would repel oil from your fingers and water, resulting in a fingerprintless screen.

So how do they do it?

The execution of making the screen is really where things start to get weird. Researchers hold a piece of glass over a candle, and deposit black soot 30-40 nanometers on the surface of the glass. The color is then removed from the soot, and a coating is put over the whole thing to make sure it doesn’t wash off.

The technology is still being worked on and is far from being released. Currently the coating can be scratched off surfaces, which is obviously far from ideal -not to mention that whole holding the glass up to a candle thing.

[via Technology Review]

Emily Price

Emily has been obsessed with computers since the early 80s when she discovered she could play Ghostbusters on her father's Commodore 64. She...