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Indian Institute of Technology in Madras aiming to develop low-cost OLED displays

At IIT Madras, the engineers are trying to lower the barriers through a colour patterning technology that is extremely fast to manufacture

22 May 2015 | Editor

According to news on the India Times The Indian Institute of Technology in Madras is partnering G Rajeswaran (ex Kodak, and a long time researcher of OLED technology) to establish an R&D project to develop and manufacture low-cost OLED displays in India.

If approved and funded by the government, this Rs 50-crore (US$ 8,000,000) project could develop the processes necessary for an entrepreneur to set up manufacturing facilities at less than Rs 100 crore (US$ 16,000,000).

Currently, no one in India manufactures electronic displays though the domestic R&D is slowly expanding. Samtel funded research in display technologies there, which now thrives as an IIT Kanpur unit. Its implicit mandate is simple - raise the level of domestic technology in electronic displays.

Samtel was once a large manufacturer of Cathode Ray Tubes (CRT) for colour television. It had to close down its CRT division in 2008, as Liquid Crystal Displays (LCD) began their onslaught on conventional picture tubes, but the company's legacy lives on at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Kanpur.

Dubdutta Ray, assistant professor of electrical engineering at IIT Madras, said, "New displays for the mass market have to be cheap, robust and efficient.

According to the article OLED is among the most advanced of LCD competitors, and since OLED entered the commercial market about 15 years ago and has taken 15% of the display market so far.

But, OLED is still expensive to manufacture as the scale is not big enough. At IIT Madras, the engineers are trying to lower the barriers through a colour patterning technology that is extremely fast to manufacture, and hence works at lower costs. It is also trying to replace the glass substrate with silicon substrate.

G Venkatesh, IIT Madras professor, said, "With a silicon substrate, we can integrate electronics as well to the display."

With the new technique, an entrepreneur can set up manufacturing with investments of less than Rs 100 core. Even if the IIT-M project is approved soon, it will take a few years before a process is developed that can be transferred to industry.

www.iitm.ac.in    economictimes.indiatimes.com   

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