OLED Flat Screen Technology


History of OLED Technology

Today, Kodak and other companies continue to build on Kodak's initial research, for new discoveries and insights into OLED materials and designs.

Registered Trademark and Name of Eastman Kodak Company

  • Kodak scientists discovered organic materials with light-emitting properties in 1979 and received the first patent for OLED device design in 1987.
  • A joint development program with Sanyo Electronic Co., Ltd, produced the world's first active-matrix, full-color 2.4-inch OLED display in 1999 and less than a year later, a 5.5-inch AM OLED. A 15-inch display was produced in late 2002 and shown at CES [Consumer Electronics Show], Las Vegas in January 2003.
  • Kodak and Sanyo formed SK Display Corp., a joint manufacturing venture, in December 2001. SK Display Corp. began quantity shipments of 2.2-inch displays in 2002.
  • Pioneer are now producing OLED under license from Kodak, initially for in-car equipment with future plans for larger screen displays for home TV.
  • Other Far East manufacturers are developing the OLED technology and variations of it for future use within larger home entertainment products. These are expected to be available from 2007.


Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) Technology

The world's first device to feature organic light emitting diode (OLED) technology was in a Kodak Digital Camera LS633, so that consumers could see and share their subjects more clearly and vividly with friends and family.

Organic light emitting diode (OLED) technology offers the best way to display pictures and video with fewer constraints on camera and other vision equipment designs.

  • OLED technology consists of extremely thin layers of organic material applied on a substrate such as glass. When stimulated by an electrical charge, these materials emit light.
  • Active-matrix (AM) OLED displays have electronic circuitry built in; so each pixel is driven independently by a corresponding circuit.

OLED Key Benefits

OLED displays offer more vivid images and crisper video without a backlight and are therefore thinner and lighter than conventional displays. Below are key benefits of OLED displays.

  • Thinner, lighter: AM OLED screens are just 1.5 millimeters thick about the thickness of a quarter and a fraction of the size possible in LCD displays.
  • Clearer, brighter: AM OLED displays have a refresh rate 1000 times faster than LCD, for fluid, clearer full-motion video. OLED luminance range is far greater than human perception and displays can brighten or dim while maintaining image contrast, shadows and highlights.
  • Wider viewing area: OLED displays have a wider viewing angle (up to 165 degrees) than most LCD displays, even in bright light.
  • Lower power consumption: OLED panels typically operate at 2 to 10 volts. Since OLED pixels only use power when they are lit, the displays can be more efficient than LCD screens, which have backlights that are always on at full brightness.


Photo Courtesy of SONY

OLED Market Opportunity

OLED technology is the first display that shows the effect of devices advanced processing power such as more colorful, life-like images and video.

  • The market for OLED displays is expected to grow quickly: Research firm DisplaySearch projects the OLED display market - including cameras and TV applications - will reach $3 billion by 2007.
  • Kodak expects to generate $500 million in OLED display sales by 2005.
  • OLED technology delivers the high-quality, electronic image display that will drive the info-imaging market, a $385 billion industry composed of devices, infrastructure, and services and media.

SOURCE: EASTMAN KODAK - edited by www.organicledtvinfo.com - a group member of Plasmatvinfo.com Limited - Dec 2003