Today there are an estimated 6 billion people in the world who own a cell phone and approximately 33 million Ipad owners in the US alone. One 2011 CNN article has actually stated that 90% of Americans own a computerized gadget of some sort. Many people own these products and rely heavily on what they do for communication, information, and entertainment. But most people have no idea about how they are made and what they are made from.
What is the Exterior of a Cell Phone Made From?
The Environmental Protection Agency states that, “A cell phone is made up of many materials. . . [it] consists of 40 percent metals, 40 percent plastics, and 20 percent ceramics and trace materials.” Most cell phone casings are made from plastic materials that are durable, but strong. These plastics are derived from taking heavy petrol or crude oil from the ground and treating it with heat to turn it into plastic. The cell phones and many of their accessories are made up of one, or a combination of plastics called acrylonitrile butadiene styrene and polycarbonate.
What Materials are inside of Cell Phones?
The small screens that display information for the phones are liquid crystal displays, better known as LCD screens. The circuit board or neural networks of the phone are constructed using copper for the transistors, and other materials including lead, nickel, beryllium, palladium, tantalum, silver and additional rare earth metals can be found in the devices as well. Learning About Lynas, and other companies that use these rare earth metals to develop technology can help you understand your gadgets and devices better.
Most Common Materials Found in Electronic Gadgets
When creating these high tech devices scientists and developers have to use materials that will help them get the difficult jobs done like making sure electrical circuits work and information is sent through the channels the way it should be. As a result, most electrical devices use semiconductor components to perform electron control. Typically these semiconductors are made from copper which is the transistor and glass which acts as an insulator and together these components allow for electrical conductivity.
How to Help Tech be Environmentally Friendly
Because it is necessary to use these rare earth metals, and various extraction and manufacturing processes, people may wonder how their phone can be more environmental. There are a few things you can do as a cell phone owner to help, and some of these tips are applicable to your other electronics as well.
· Pick a phone that you will be able to keep for a longer period of time.
· When you are ready to get a new phone, participate in a reuse or recycling program.
· Charge your battery the way the manufacturer suggests for a long life use.
· Check out the EPA website for additional recycling programs and resources.
With all the technology and advancements the current generation is a great time to be alive. And as consumers and user of that technology, the more you learn about it the smarter you can be with its use while you own it, and when you’re ready to be done with it.