Polycarbonate developed to enable ultra thin netbooks

Bayer Material Science has produced a reinforced polycarbonate to enable thinner and lighter housings for laptops and notebooks. It says the high-tech plastic will facilitate the next generation of notebooks that will be 'razor-thin'.

Steffan Huber, a marketing executive at Bayer's polycarbonates business unit said: "We are committed to providing solutions to the next trend of mobile computing. These requirements call for more sophisticated hardware made from higher performance materials."

Currently notebooks typically weigh up to 2.6kg and have a 3.5cm profile thickness. An ultrathin laptop could weigh as little as 1.5kg and have a 2.1cm profile thickness. Bayer specially formulated this reinforced polycarbonates to trim weight and allow for reduced profile thickness to be used.

Dr Ning Hao, a material engineer at IT company Lenovo, said: "At the same time it enables [us] manufacturers to save energy and time in the production process of the parts. One full set of housing can be produced in less than one minute."

The new material also comes in a broad range of colours and allows the laptop housings to achieve complex 3D geometric structures and innovative surface textures, and can also be coated.

Justin Cunningham

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