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Researchers Create First Efficient Flexible Plastic OLED

By - Source: University of Toronto | B 20 comments

Scientists at the University of Toronto claim to have discovered a method to manufacture flexible OLEDs that could lead the way to more durable and "impact-resistant" displays.

Zhibin Wang and Michael Helander used in their invention a 50-100 nm thin layer of tantalum oxide on plastic to achieve a refractive index that was previously only delivered by heavy metal-doped glass.

The researchers believe that the technology can reduce the cost of production of OLEDs and bring the vision of flexible OLEDs to the mainstream market. According to the University of Toronto, their display is the first high-efficiency OLED on plastic ever demonstrated.

There was no information when the display technology could become commercially available. Detailed findings of the research project are published in the current issue of Nature Photonics.

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  • -6 Hide
    alidan , November 2, 2011 2:28 AM
    i wouldn't want a plastic display without a clamshell, assuming they mean phones.

    i mean smudges are bad enough, do i have to go back to easy to scratch too?
  • 6 Hide
    Gamer-girl , November 2, 2011 2:32 AM
    This could be used to replace newspapers, e-paper maybe? lol
  • 0 Hide
    de5_Roy , November 2, 2011 3:05 AM
    damn that looks cool.
    i thought some smartphones and tablets with flexible display supposed to come out this year.
  • 3 Hide
    Uberragen21 , November 2, 2011 3:34 AM
    Hmmm, Samsung and LG announced this back in November of 2010 and Samsung had working prototypes at the CES in Las Vegas in January 2011. Somehow I fail to see how this is the "first high-efficiency OLED on plastic ever demonstrated".

    What do they mean by high-efficiency? Is it efficiently made (ie cheap to manufacture)? Is it energy efficient, more than Samsung's or LG's flexible OLED screen? Why does this sound like some marketing bs to me?
  • 2 Hide
    kyuuketsuki , November 2, 2011 4:34 AM
    Uberragen21Why does this sound like some marketing bs to me?

    Because the scientists at the University of Toronto have a marketing department?

    Granted, the article really should clarify what exactly is meant by "high-efficiency". Since they say that this should help bring flexible OLEDs to mass-market, I can only assume they mean efficient in terms of being cheaper/easier to manufacture.
  • 4 Hide
    memadmax , November 2, 2011 5:34 AM
    Damn, she's cute =D
  • 0 Hide
    youssef 2010 , November 2, 2011 7:29 AM
    Any research that reduces the cost of manufacturing a certain technology is incredible
  • 1 Hide
    IndignantSkeptic , November 2, 2011 9:28 AM
    dammit when do we get OLED screens? i'm sick of waiting; i hate LCD screens.
  • 6 Hide
    back_by_demand , November 2, 2011 10:05 AM
    One step closer to a HArry Potter newspaper
  • 1 Hide
    drwho1 , November 2, 2011 10:11 AM
    pretty sure we have seen those on the Harry Potter movies...
  • 0 Hide
    xcomvic , November 2, 2011 11:35 AM
    OLED FTW. Let's say 3 years if that, to bring it down to mass-market consumer levels. That's how long it took LED/LCDs to drop down from $5000 to $1200.
  • 0 Hide
    back_by_demand , November 2, 2011 12:25 PM
    de5_roydamn that looks cool.i thought some smartphones and tablets with flexible display supposed to come out this year.

    I thought that to at first, then realised, if there is a flexible screen mounted in a none flexible chassis, then what's the point?
  • 0 Hide
    dark_lord69 , November 2, 2011 1:10 PM
    Finally a calander that you never have to tare off each month!
    And Newspapers that change everyday and you don't throw away. (On the other hand, how do you clip coupons?)
  • 0 Hide
    drapacioli , November 2, 2011 1:50 PM
    Remember the window shade TV from Back to the Future II? Here it is, and 3 years is plenty of time for it to go mainstream :p  Just don't forget: Bob Gale guessed it would happen by 2015, and way back in '87 too.
  • 0 Hide
    JeTJL , November 2, 2011 2:04 PM
    Look's vaguely similar to E-Ink.
  • 4 Hide
    maestintaolius , November 2, 2011 5:00 PM
    IndignantSkepticdammit when do we get OLED screens? i'm sick of waiting; i hate LCD screens.

    As soon as someone figures out how to make them last as long as LCDs. I used to work on these back in the '00s (with flexible displays being the target market no less) and the largest problems we had were water and oxygen. The devices would work forever in a argon glove box but would fail in a few weeks in normal air because water and oxygen would eventually permeate through the case and destroy the OLEDs. The OLED polymers were also about 7000-22000$ per gram depending on the color (I suspect this has come down to more reasonable prices in the last decade). The main issue though, was finding something transparent (to let the light out) but also prevented any oxygen or water from getting to the OLED polymer.
  • -3 Hide
    f-14 , November 2, 2011 7:29 PM
    Uberragen21Hmmm, Samsung and LG announced this back in November of 2010 and Samsung had working prototypes at the CES in Las Vegas in January 2011. Somehow I fail to see how this is the "first high-efficiency OLED on plastic ever demonstrated". What do they mean by high-efficiency? Is it efficiently made (ie cheap to manufacture)? Is it energy efficient, more than Samsung's or LG's flexible OLED screen? Why does this sound like some marketing bs to me?

    because the media favors social communists. it's not significant if capitalists already have working floor models if a commie has just reverse engineered it in their lab.
  • 0 Hide
    stevo777 , November 2, 2011 9:20 PM
    Aside from being cool, I would imagine something like this will save a lot of trees as we'll cut way down on paper usage.
  • 0 Hide
    quangluu96 , November 2, 2011 10:11 PM
    LOL Harry Potter's newspaper ;) 
  • 0 Hide
    eddieroolz , November 3, 2011 11:10 PM
    f-14it's not significant if capitalists already have working floor models if a commie has just reverse engineered it in their lab.


    I fail to see how communism can relate to this article at all.