The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 65 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover one of Apple's inventions relating to advancing waterproofing on iOS devices with liquid intrusion sensing capabilities. Rumors keep pointing to Apple advancing their waterproofing iPhone features and today's granted patent confirms one of the methods involved in Apple's multi-faceted approach to this solution.
Apple notes that "To detect liquid intrusion events in which moisture enters the housing of an electronic device, the electronic device may be provided with one or more electronic liquid contact sensors. The liquid contact sensors may have electrodes. Control circuitry may make measurements across the electrodes such as resistance and capacitance measurements to detect the presence of liquid.
Corrective actions may be taken in real time in response to liquid detection. For example, sensitive electronic components within the electronic device can be powered down in response to liquid detection to prevent component damage.
Liquid detection information may also be used for debugging. For example, information from liquid contact sensors can be used in determining whether an electronic device is reparable or should be replaced and can be used in improving future device designs for enhanced immunity to liquid exposure damage."
Apple's patent FIG. 15 is a perspective view of an illustrative liquid contact sensor structure formed from interdigitated sensor electrodes on a substrate such as a flexible printed circuit substrate mounted on a support structure; FIG. 16 is a perspective view of an illustrative connector of the type that may have connector contacts that serve as liquid contact sensor electrodes for a liquid contact sensor.
Apple's granted patent 9,335,355 was originally filed in Q1 2003 and published today by the US Patent and Trademark Office.
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