Feeds

Boffins demo OLED-on-a-roll production process

Cheaper flat-panel TVs coming

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

General Electric scientists have worked out how to manufacture OLED displays on a roll, a process that they hope will one day allow panels to be punched out cheaply and cut to size like cloth.

So far, GE's researchers have simply demonstrated such an approach is possible. But they believe that, with further development, the technique could soon result in vast sheets of OLED materials flowing out of production plants and wrapped onto large rolls ready for shipment.

OLED panels sandwich organic compounds between two electrodes. When a charge is placed across the electrodes, the organic compounds emit light. Different compounds produce different colours of light, and by building cells out of these structures, it's possible to build a full-colour display.

It's a technology widely seen as the successor to today's LCD and plasma screens. OLED produces bright colours and uses much less energy to do so. However, big OLED panels are very costly to produce and right now don't last as long as LCD and plasma before their image quality degrades.

GE OLED roll

GE boffins unroll rolled-up OLEDs

GE's process seeks to address the first of these two challenges: to get the cost of manufacture down. The industrial giant said it has spent $13m showing such a 'roll-to-roll' approach is possible.

GE is well known for its lighting products, and that's where its interest in OLED lies rather than display panels. However, it said its research will help the production of both types of OLED, and others.

The company's vision is to replace lightbulbs and fluorescent tubes with light-emitting sheets that, because of their size, deliver more light but at much lower power than today's lighting systems eat up.

Four years ago, GE demo'd a 60 x 60cm OLED panel capable of producing as much light as a modern incandescent bulb. It wants to begin commercialising such products in 2010.

Special Report: Telly vision - future display technologies

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Vulture 2 takes a battering in 100km/h test run
Still in one piece, but we're going to need MORE POWER
Boffins ID freakish spine-smothered prehistoric critter: The CLAW gave it away
Bizarre-looking creature actually related to velvet worms
TRIANGULAR orbits will help Rosetta to get up close with Comet 67P
Probe will be just 10km from Space Duck in October
CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap
Curiosity finds new drilling target after course correction
ANU boffins demo 'tractor beam' in water
The current state of the art, apparently
China to test recoverable moon orbiter
I'll have some rocks and a moon cheese pizza please, home delivery
What does a flashmob of 1,024 robots look like? Just like this
Sorry, Harvard, did you say kilobots or KILLER BOTS?
NASA's rock'n'roll shock: ROLLING STONE FOUND ON MARS
No sign of Ziggy Stardust and his band
Why your mum was WRONG about whiffy tattooed people
They're a future source of RENEWABLE ENERGY
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.