About OLED

An organic light emitting diode (OLED), also light emitting polymer (LEP) and organic electro luminescence (OEL), is any light emitting diode (LED) whose emissive electroluminescent layer is composed of a film of organic compounds. The layer usually contains a polymer substance that allows suitable organic compounds to be deposited. They are deposited in rows and columns onto a flat carrier by a simple “printing” process. The resulting matrix of pixels can emit light of different colors.

Such systems can be used in television screens, computer displays, small, portable system screens such as cell phones and PDAs, advertising, information and indication. OLEDs can also be used in light sources for general space illumination, and large-area light-emitting elements. OLEDs typically emit less light per area than inorganic solid-state based LEDs which are usually designed for use as point-light sources.

A significant benefit of OLED displays over traditional liquid crystal displays (LCDs) is that OLEDs do not require a backlight to function. Thus they draw far less power and, when powered from a battery, can operate longer on the same charge. Because there is no need for a backlight, an OLED display can be much thinner than an LCD panel.


The radically different manufacturing process of OLEDs lends itself to many advantages over flat-panel displays made with LCD technology. Since OLEDs can be printed onto any suitable substrate using an inkjet printer or even screen printing technologies,[41] they can theoretically have a significantly lower cost than LCDs or plasma displays.[citation needed] Printing OLEDs onto flexible substrates opens the door to new applications such as roll-up displays and displays embedded in fabrics or clothing.

OLEDs enable a greater range of colors, gamut, brightness, contrast (both DR and static) and viewing angle than LCDs because OLED pixels directly emit light. OLED pixel colors appear correct and unshifted, even as the viewing angle approaches 90 degrees from normal. LCDs use a backlight and cannot show true black, while an off OLED element produces no light and consumes no power. Energy is also wasted in LCDs because they require polarizers that filter out about half of the light emitted by the backlight. Additionally, color filters in most color LCDs filter out two-thirds of the light; technology to separate backlight colors by diffraction has not been widely adopted.[citation needed]

OLEDs also have a faster response time than standard LCD screens. Whereas the fastest LCD displays currently have a 2ms response time (manufacturer’s quote), an OLED can have less than 0.01ms response time.[42]


The biggest technical problem for OLEDs is the limited lifetime of the organic materials.[43] In particular, blue OLEDs historically have had a lifetime of around 14,000 hours (five years at 8 hours a day) when used for flat-panel displays, which is lower than the typical lifetime of LCD, LED or PDP technology—each currently rated for about 60,000 hours, depending on manufacturer and model. Some manufactures of OLED displays (such as Toshiba and Panasonic) have come up with a way to solve this problem with a new technology that can double the lifespan of OLED displays, pushing their expected life past that of LCD displays.[44] A metal membrane helps deliver light from polymers in the substrate throughout the glass surface more efficiently than current OLEDs. The result is the same picture quality with half the brightness and a doubling of the screen’s expected life.[45]

In 2007, experimental PLEDs were created which can sustain 400 cd/m² of luminance for over 198,000 hours for green OLEDs and 62,000 hours for blue OLEDs.[46]

The intrusion of water into displays can damage or destroy the organic materials. Therefore, improved sealing processes are important for practical manufacturing and may limit the longevity of more flexible displays.[47]

Technology demos

Samsung applications

In January 2005, Samsung announced the world’s largest OLED TV at the time, at 21-inches.[48] This OLED featured the highest resolution at 2.3 million pixels (WUXGA: widescreen ultra-extended graphics array) at the time. In addition, the company adopted AM-based technology for its low power consumption and high-resolution qualities.

In January 2008, Samsung showcased the world’s largest and thinnest OLED TV at the time, at 31-inches and 4.3 mm.[49]

In May 2008, Samsung unveiled an ultra-thin 12.1inch laptop OLED display concept, with a 1,280 x 768 resolution with infinite contrast ratio.[50] According to Woo Jong Lee, Vice President of the Mobile Display Marketing Team at Samsung SDI, the company expects OLED displays to be used in notebook PCs as soon as 2010.[51]

In October 2008, Samsung showcased the world’s thinnest OLED display, also the first to be ‘flappable’ and bendable.[52] It measures just 0.05 mm (thinner than paper), yet a Samsung staff member said that it is “technically possible to make the panel thinner”.[52] To achieve this thickness, Samsung etched an OLED panel that uses a normal glass substrate. The drive circuit was formed by low-temperature polysilicon TFTs. Also, low-molecular organic EL materials were employed. The pixel count of the display is 480 × 272. The contrast ratio is 100,000:1, and the luminance is 200 cd/m². The color reproduction range is 100% of the NTSC standard.

In October 2008, Samsung unveiled the world’s largest OLED Television at 40-inch with a Full HD resolution of 19201080 pixel.[53] In the FPD International, Samsung stated that its 40-inch OLED Panel is the largest size currently possible . The panel has a contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1, a color gamut of 107% NTSC and a luminance of 200 cd/m² (peak luminance of 600 cd/m²).

Sony applications

In 2004 Sony released the Sony CLIÉ PEG-VZ90, the first commercial device to feature an OLED screen.

In 2006 Sony introduced the MZ-RH1 Portable Minidisc Recorder, which has an OLED screen.[54]

At the Las Vegas CES 2007, Sony showcased 11-inch (28 cm, resolution 960×540) and 27-inch[55] (68.5 cm, full HD resolution at 1920×1080) models claiming million-to-one contrast ratio and total thickness (including bezels) of 5 mm. Sony released a commercial version of this television in Japan in December, 2007.[56]

Sony plans to begin manufacturing 1000 11-inch OLED TVs per month for market testing purposes.[57] Sony has begun selling an 11-inch OLED Digital TV (XEL-1) for $2499.99 CAD[58]

On May 25, 2007, Sony publicly unveiled a video of a 2.5-inch flexible OLED screen which is only 0.3 millimeters thick.[59] The screen displayed images of a bicycle stunt and a picturesque lake while the screen was flexed. On October 1 2007, Sony announced it will sell 11-Inch OLED TVs for 200,000 yen (1,962.51 USD as of 4/1/08) from December 2007, only in Japan[60] and with an initial production of 2000 units per month.

At the CES 2008, Sony showcased the Walkman X series with 3” OLED touchscreen[61].

On April 16, 2008, at “Display 2008″, Sony showed a 0.2 mm (0.0079 inch) thick 3.5 inch display with a resolution of 320200 pixels and a 0.3 mm thick 11 inch display with 960540 pixels resolution. That’s one-tenth the thickness of the XEL-1 (which is also 11 inch and the same resolution).[62][63]

On October 4, 2008, Sony has published results of research it carried out with the Max Planck Institute over the possibility of mass-market bending displays, which could replace rigid LCDs and plasma screens. Eventually, bendable, transparent OLED screens could be stacked to produce 3D images and their outstanding characteristics means that their contrast ratio and viewing angles are far better than existing products [64].

In April 2009, Sony demonstrated a 21″ prototype at the Display Japan conference in Tokyo.[65]

Other companies

The Optimus Maximus keyboard developed by the Art. Lebedev Studio and released early 2008 uses 113 48×48-pixel OLEDs (10.1×10.1 mm) for its keys.

OLEDs can be used in High-Resolution Holography (Volumetric display). Professor Orbit showed on May 12, 2007, EXPO Lisbon the potential application of these materials to reproduce three-dimensional video.[citation needed]

OLEDs could also be used as solid-state light sources. OLED efficiency and lifetime already exceed those of incandescent light bulbs, and OLEDs are investigated worldwide as a source of general illumination; an example is the EU OLLA project.[66]

On March 11, 2008 GE Global Research demonstrated the first successful roll-to-roll manufactured OLED, marking a major milestone towards cost effective production of commercial OLED technology. The four year, $13 million research project was carried out by GE Global Research, Energy Conversion Devices, Inc and the U.S. Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).[67][68]

Chi Mei EL Corp of Tainan, Taiwan, demonstrated a 25″ Low-Temperature Polycrystalline silicon Active Matrix OLED at the Society of Information Displays (SID) conference in Los Angeles, CA, USA on May 20–22, 2008.

On June 5, 2009 DuPont demonstrated a new material that can be printed, so called solution deposition. The breakthrough is the ability to produce economically scalable and durable OLED displays at the 2009 International Symposium, May 31-June 5 2009, Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, San Antonio, TX, USA

Commercial uses

OLED technology is used in commercial applications such as small screens for mobile phones and portable digital audio players (MP3 players), car radios, digital cameras, and high-resolution microdisplays for head-mounted displays. Such portable applications favor the high light output of OLEDs for readability in sunlight, and their low power drain. Portable displays are also used intermittently, so the lower lifespan of OLEDs is less important here. Prototypes have been made of flexible and rollable displays which use OLEDs’ unique characteristics. OLEDs have been used in most Motorola and Samsung color cell phones, as well as some LG and Sony Ericsson phones, notably the Z610i, and some models of the Sony Walkman.[69] It is also found in the Creative Zen V/V Plus series of MP3 players and iriver U10/clix. Nokia has also introduced recently some OLED products, including the 7900 Prism,the Nokia 8800 Arte, and the Nokia N85 and the Nokia N86 8MP, both of which feature an AMOLED display.

On October 1, 2007, Sony became the first company to announce an OLED television for commercial sale. The XEL-1 11″ OLED Digital Television sells for $2,499.99 in the United States and Canada. In January 2009, handheld computer manufacturer OQO introduced the smallest Windows Vista computer with an OLED display.[70]

Newer OLED applications include signs and lighting.[71][72] The first OLED lights were commercialized in May 2009. Philips Lighting opened up a webshop, where OLED lighting samples under the brand name ‘Lumiblade’ can be ordered online.[73]

In April 2009, Samsung brought to the United States the first phone using an AMOLED display, the Impression on AT&T.

On May 26, 2009, Microsoft confirmed the existence of the Zune HD portable media player. The Zune HD will use a 3.3-inch OLED multitouch screen.

In July 2009. Samsung Electronics launched an 3.5″ WVGA AMOLED 3g full-touchscreen phone called “HAPTIC AMOLED” which looks quite similar to SAMSUNG JET with samsung‘s own touchwiz ui version 2.0.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OLED

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