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Plessey to Market Monolithic GaN-on-Silicon MicroLED Display

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Plessey Semiconductors Ltd., a developer of optoelectronic technology solutions, has announced its commitment to being the first to market with a monolithic microLED-based display based on GaN-on-silicon.

Plessey commits to launching industry’s first monolithic microLED displays by 1H18Plessey has also started an extensive licensing program that will see the company license out its GaN-on-silicon expertise to microLED manufacturers in line with its new business strategy. GaN-on-silicon has been said to be the only technology platform capable of addressing all of the challenges involved with manufacturing microLED displays economically and in high volumes.

“We made the decision to become a technology platform provider in order to get our technology out to the widest possible manufacturing base to meet this growing demand,” said Michael LeGoff, CEO of Plessey Semiconductor. “By being the first to market with a monolithic microLED display, we will be demonstrating our expertise and the ability to access our proven turnkey solution, enabling manufacturers to ramp up the development and production of microLED displays to address emerging applications.”

One of the main challenges involved with manufacturing microLED displays using a nonmonolithic approach is the placement of LED chips onto a CMOS backplane, currently achieved using pick-and-place equipment. This process involves the individual placement of every LED on a pitch of less than 50 µm, requiring new and expensive equipment that is subject to productivity issues. As the pixel density of displays increases and pitch reduces, pick and place becomes less technically and commercially feasible.

Moving to a monolithic process removes the need for chip placement and will enable smaller and higher-resolution displays for a range of applications including virtual reality, augmented reality and head-up displays.

“GaN-on-silicon is the only technology that makes sense in terms of scalability and performance,” said Keith Strickland, chief technology officer at Plessey Semiconductor. “It offers better thermal conductivity than sapphire and higher luminosity than OLED, which is why this technology is widely acknowledged to be the only one that can deliver high-resolution, high-luminance displays.”

Photonics Spectra
Mar 2018
BusinessPlessey SemiconductormicroLEDLEDsDisplaysGaN-on-siliconEuropelight speed

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