A. Current Flat Panel Display Technology

1. Uses of Flat Panel Displays (FPD's)
a. Lap-top computers
b. Military Aircraft/Tank
c. Automobile
d. Portable Televisions
e. TV Cameras (camcorder viewfinder)
f. Handheld games

2. Current Flat Panel Display (FPD) Technologies
a. Liquid Crystal Displays (LCD's)
b. Plasma Displays (PD's)
c. Electroluminescent Displays (ELD's)

3. Active matrix LCD (AMLCD's) dominate FPD's but disadvantages

a. Work by polarized light passing through LCD coated glass sheets
1) One sheet -> Active Matrix Driving Circuitry
2) Other sheet -> Array of Red, Green, Blue Dots

b. Disadvantages
1) Limited Viewing Angle
2) Limited Size (13" Diagonal, 6.3 million pixels max, 1994) #1
3) Limited Number of Colors
4) High Power Requirements for back light
5) Inefficient - Polarized and Color Filters Reduce Light Output
6) Difficult to fabricate - many critical microfabrication steps (TFT's)

7) Very High Capital Investment
8) High Production Cost - Low Yields

4. Traditional Cathode Ray Tube (CRT)

a. Advantages: Better Image Quality than FPD's
1) High Brightness
2) Large Sizes
3) Large Viewing Angle
4) Enormous Number of Colors
5) Very fast

b. Disadvantages:
1) Physically bulky
2) Large power consumption
3) Screen Flicker

B. New Field Emission Displays

1. Enormous Potential Future Role #1 & #8

a. Promises to dominate AMLCD's and maybe CRT's
b. Higher Image quality than AMLCD's (res, num col)
c. >3 times Brighter (> 200 cd/m^2) than AMLCD's
d. 4 times more energy efficient than AMLCD's (2W for 10" VGA)
e. Virtually 180 degree Viewing Angle (Vert & Hor)
f. Increased Speed: Fast Response Time -> under 2 usec

g. Very thin package - 2.4 mm typically
h. Wide operating temperature (-55 to 85 C) vs. AMLCD's (0-50 C)
i. Fewer critical fabrication steps than AMLCD's

j. Should cost 40-60% less than AMLCD's
k. A lot of current development in U.S.
l. May give U.S. stronghold over Japan in FPD 's

2. What are FED's ? Combine best of CRT and FPD's

a. Electron beam illuminates R, G, B phosphors
b. New cathode: microfabricated pyramids emit e-'s
c. Thousands of tips behind each pixel
d. Matrix row-column addressing so no TFT's
e. No bulky deflection coils /wire filaments
f. No back light, color filters, polarizing filters, LC's
g. Totally flat package (2-4 mm thick)
h. Simple design

  • Main Outline
  • II. Basic Theory
  • Sources