January 14, 2009

Photonic Crystal displays technology speed-ups

Some time ago, I commented (Opalux P-ink) on work by the firm Opalux in collaboration with the University of Toronto in Canada (Opalux was a spin-off of University of Toronto work).

Now a new Technology Review Article follows continued work by the University to speed up the color transitions of this technology, a candidate for very highly reflective (bright, depending on the ambient light) e-paper displays that consume very little power.

They seem to be making significant progress on one of the import attributes of such a display technology, although they have plenty of work left to do before it's ready for prime-time.

Don't miss watching the video, ignoring the horrible ad up front. In it I don't see much in the way of a blue color, but I'm not sure is that a limitation of the technology or just the test set-up.

One to be watched, but don't delay that e-book purchase waiting for this technology to hit the streets.

January 13, 2009

HP SAILs into flexible display waters

HP's research labs (HP Labs) have been quietly working away for some time on key technical aspects of flexible electronics, including their application to flexible displays.

Now they have announced publicly progress made in their "SAIL" process (Self-Aligned Imprint Lithography), which is a roll-to-roll manufacturing process for electronics, which if married with a flexible display technology like e-Ink film, can produce flexible displays.

They work in collaboration with a number of partners, including the Flexible Display Center (FDC) at Arizona State University

On the HP web site there is a promotional video on SAIL, starring Carl Tausig the HP Lab's Lab Director for the effort and you can read the full Press Release here: HP and Arizona State University Demo Flexible, Unbreakable Displays

One of the key aspects to get across about the SAIL process is that the multiple semiconductor and other layers and all laid down on the flexible substrate at the start, before the layers are etched away. This avoid all problems due to alignment that occur in processes where the layers are laid down, etched, then another layer laid down, then etched etc.

January 12, 2009

Flexible Reader part of Sony's Flexible OLED concept display

Will your next laptop look like that, or your next (first?) eBook reader?

This came out a while back at CES, but I still thought it was interesting.

See the original post from Engadget.

Sony are pushing forward with OLED in the market, as evidenced by their OLED TV. Here they show design concepts for products using OLED displays on flexible backplanes (and front-planes for that matter) and amoung them is an eReader.

For the Reader, it seems the flexibility is put more to purpose of robustness, and "feel" of a book than any attempt at a roll-up book. That´s a good call in my book.

How it would fold shut is not obvious from the images in the gallery.
I have commented briefly on Quallcomm's "Mirasol" MEMS display technology in the past on this blog, specifically here: Qualcomm's MEMS "e-paper" display debuts

Now, thanks to the CES trade-show this week we can see another implementation of it, on a GPS device, reported by Engadget.

With one of its advantages being great visibility in bright lighting conditions, using it in a GPS makes a lot of sense, not just to improve the visibility of the display over existing GPS offerings but to help them extend the battery life of the GPS, one of there limitations at the moment.