A year in organic electronics
December 21, 2015
As is traditional at this time of year, we thought we would take a look back at our year in organic electronics and highlight a few key moments for the company as well as the industry.
2015 began with launch of FlexEnable. In February the company set out its stall as an expert in flexible electronics, ready to provide its technology and products to system builders, device makers and product companies, with a view to enable game-changing innovation in areas including wearables and the IoT.
In the same month, we announced that we had, alongside our partner Merck, developed the world’s first organic LCD (OLCD) – glass-free, bendable, light and thinner than conventional LCDs, and lower cost than other flexible display technologies. Given that LCDs are the dominant display technology in the market today, this breakthrough can only herald benefits for volume manufacturing.
Continuing with a full-on month for the team at FlexEnable, we were pleased to welcome UK Prime Minister David Cameron to our Cambridge site and demonstrate some of our recent technological breakthrough. The PM’s visit marked a pledge of a multi-billion pound investment in the local area which will see science, tech and engineering companies like FlexEnable, benefitting from government support.
In April, we announced our membership to the Graphene Flagship – Europe’s biggest research initiative. As part of the consortium, we’re working with other institutions to take graphene from the realm of the lab and out to the public as a usable product within a decade. In particular, our research and engineering teams are looking at how to use graphene within the stack of different flexible layers that form flexible displays and sensors driven by our organic transistor technology.
Hot on the heels of our OLCD demonstrator was our glass-free, full-colour, flexible AMOLED display in June. Working with our partner Chunghwa Picture Tube (CPT), this signalled a major step in the viability of the volume manufacturing of flexible AMOLED displays, and making truly flexible OLED displays a reality. Six months later, we released a video showing a 125 micron thick, flexible, colour OLED display operating at full video-rate (60Hz).
We talk a lot about the potential applications for our transistor technology platform and we were delighted to showcase a really innovative design at the 2015 IAA with our partner Flex. By integrating one of our flexible displays to the A-Pillar of a car, and pairing it with a camera fixed to the wing mirror, we managed to fix the blindspot problem!
By November, we had showcased a number of our technology breakthroughs at various industry events, finishing up at the IDTechEx show in the US, where we unveiled our conformable, 4.7” liquid crystal display module, with a thickness of just 1.3mm, and a minimum bend radius of less than 30mm.
It’s been a great year, and there are many more exciting projects and partnerships currently underway that we hope to tell you more about in 2016. We’re really quite excited about the possibilities of a new year in organic electronics. If you’d like to share your highlights – on our tech, the industry, or a future application – please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.