Cheaper LCDs? Honeywell is trying!

Honeywell Electronic Materials announced that it has launched new materials for the production of flat panel displays aimed at reducing manufacturing costs and power consumption while improving color uniformity and device lifespan.

The materials were developed through a project announced last year with the United States Display Consortium (USDC), a public-private partnership chartered with developing the supply chain for the flat panel display industry, and in collaboration with the Flexible Display Center at Arizona State University (ASU FDC), an industry-government-academic collaborative venture focused on developing advanced high information content flexible displays and associated materials and manufacturing technology.

Honeywell’s material enhances the amount of visible light that passes through the display while only absorbing less than 1 percent of the light. In addition, Honeywell’s material achieves smoothness, also known in the industry as planarity, in excess of 90 percent. As a result, the color uniformity of the display is improved. Additionally, initial manufacturing results, supported by operational models, show cost of ownership decreased by 10 percent or greater.

“Honeywell was able to leverage its existing technology and experience used in semiconductor material production in a way that addresses critical challenges facing the flat panel display industry,” said Peter Smith, display business director for Honeywell Specialty Materials. “Our collaboration with the USDC and ASU’s FDC Pilot Line Team has led to a new offering will help drive industry growth by making displays more rugged and cheaper to manufacture.”

The new materials are specifically focused on overcoming the challenges of planarization, or smoothing, encountered in fabricating thin film transistors for flexible display applications, long a focus of the USDC members and technical council.

Thin film transistors are a critical component of flat panel displays, which are commonly used in notebook and laptop computers. Flat panel displays are comprised of an array of pixels which together create an image on the display. Thin-film transistors act as switches to individually turn each pixel on or off. Planarization is critical for creating the uniformly flat surfaces necessary during the production of these transistors.

The new materials address planarization in order to enable flexible displays to realize their promise of information displays that are ultrathin, lightweight, and intrinsically rugged. The materials improve manufacturability in terms of both costs and yields, and the improved product performance results in a better viewing experience with the resulting display.

Tags: Honeywell, LCD, cheap LCD, materials

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