Drop-Resistant Mobile Phone Using ‘Fluid’ For Protective Cover

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Shock absorbing protective cover for mobile phones and tablets is itself a great area of research and appeal apart from the extensive digital machine lying underneath. There were times when one feet drop of a phone produced enough physical damage to render it useless.  Since then protective covers come in different materials and textures, to be lightweight as well as attractive. But why not try a gadget enclosed with a magnetorheological fluid as a protective casing?

Magnetorheological fluid is a smart fluid which acts like a normal fluid at ground state, but becomes a quasi-solid under the influence of magnetic field. It consists of micro-sized magnetic iron particles suspended in a career fluid, usually a type of oil. At normal conditions, the object behaves just like any normal viscous liquid. But when a magnetic field is applied, the ferromagnetic particles align themselves according to the direction of magnetic field, and hinder the flowability of the liquid. Thereby the viscosity of the fluid increases to such an extent as to become a viscoelastic solid. Such a state of a viscous liquid suspended with aligned micro solid particles effectively absorbs shock vibrations; hence they are used in dampers, brakes, clutches and journal bearings.

 

Magnetorheological fluid principle (Source: Intechopen)
Magnetorheological fluid principle (Source: Intechopen)

The main objective of magnetorheological fluid is to maintain it as a fluid and to turn on the magnetic field at the exact time required. This is achieved with a precise sensing and control system, to initiate magnetisation at the exact moment when a brake or clutch pedal is pressed. Now let us try to take it a step further, i.e. to activate the magnetic field autonomously without human interference. That would need a sensing system to sense the conditions when damping is required, and activate the magnetic circuit instantaneously.

For example, let us consider a mobile phone covered with a thin layer of magnetorheological fluid at its rear and side surfaces. At normal usage conditions, it is supposed to behave as viscous fluid, analogous to a silica case. When accidentally the device is dropped, this sudden increase in acceleration due to free fall is to be sensed by a sensor, and turn on a trigger to an electromagnet. The electromagnet then becomes magnetised, inducing the ferromagnetic iron particles inside the fluid to align along its magnetic orientation. When all this happens within few milliseconds, the damper will get activated and absorb the shock when the phone hits the ground.

 

 

Magnetorheological fluids have the potential to offer more advanced properties and applications, such as in helmets and alternative for Kevlar. With more research and high volume production, such life-saving smart fluids may become a common entity one day.

23 thoughts on “Drop-Resistant Mobile Phone Using ‘Fluid’ For Protective Cover

  • September 14, 2016 at 12:04 am
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    Awesome technology!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 3:29 am
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    I know plenty of ppl who need this actually

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  • September 14, 2016 at 3:32 am
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    wow i just learned so much id rather have one of these than any other wow you know its tough

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  • September 14, 2016 at 11:27 am
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    This sounds like a “Magnetic Gel” technology… Great if it protects your expensive phone and other tech from accidental drops. !

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  • September 14, 2016 at 12:29 pm
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    I really love Technology and this is Amazing. I always think, what’s next.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 2:32 pm
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    Great Technology ! I know a lot of people who would buy one , me included!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:48 pm
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    Shut up and take my money.

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  • September 15, 2016 at 1:37 am
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    My son and his girlfriend really need these. Currently both of their phones have badly cracked screens and this is the third time my son’s has been damaged. Of course, my grandchildren may be partially responsible. My son is not really THAT clumsy.

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  • September 18, 2016 at 11:06 pm
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    And tablets? Great! Would have been a good idea before I dropped my IPad mini.

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  • September 20, 2016 at 1:24 am
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    gotta appreciate shatterproof.

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  • September 20, 2016 at 1:44 am
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    I totally would want this in every color!

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  • September 22, 2016 at 10:22 pm
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    Much needed – so many devices & friends devices affected by water!

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  • September 24, 2016 at 11:14 pm
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    Omg this phone case must have been made for me! I recently have been dropping my phone so much the screen is a mess! And the designs are awesome!!

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  • September 26, 2016 at 7:34 am
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    Awesome technology

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  • December 16, 2017 at 2:09 am
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    I love stuff like this! It’s great that there are people that keep pushing the limits of everyday things. They say “necessity is the mother of invention” but it’s also great when people work on things just to make it better! Can you imagine if we would have stopped improving on things through the decades? I wonder if we will ever find a happy place in the world of tech. Is there a stopping point? Having a phone case that can transform itself into an armored shield is awesome! But I’m looking forward to the time when legs and arms can come out of the phone and catch itself if it ever is dropped! haha

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  • January 4, 2018 at 6:51 pm
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    Awesome, smooth looking effective cases.

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  • January 12, 2018 at 6:28 pm
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    Awesome looking protective cover I will have to purchase for my cell phone.

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  • January 17, 2018 at 12:37 am
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    Just thought about how active this fluid would be while someone is talking on the phone or carrying it in their hand. Dropping the phone would cause a G-force and that would cause the liquid to harden. That same G-force would be happening when someone raises the phone to their ear or swinging their arms while they walk. I wouldn’t bother me, I was just thinking about how many times it would harden in everyday use. It would be really active. I wonder how much it would drain the battery? But it still sounds really neat!! I’d use it for the cool factor!

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  • April 27, 2018 at 2:39 am
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    Great technology……

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  • May 29, 2018 at 9:37 am
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    Awesome and so useful.

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