As foldable and flexible displays are moving to mainstream consumer products such as smartphones, tablets and wearable devices, the demand for new material solutions is rapidly taking off. Major device makers are starting to shift away from LCD with LED backlight illumination to OLED displays, which are thinner, have more vivid colors with high dynamic range function as well as improved luminance.
OLED displays can also express new forms such as being rolled-up like a newspaper. Emerging displays, including fast growing markets such as automotive and signage, OLEDs market is predicted to reach a value of nearly $40 billion by 2020, with a growth of about 18% CAGR during the 2015-2020 period.
The collaboration relates to Inkron’s Optical Coating (IOC) products of photo-patternable dielectric and light control materials, where features such as unique optical properties as well as excellent processing suitability for OLED and on-cell touch sensors can be implemented. These include low temperature and UV cure processing as well as physical features such as well controllable optical properties and mechanical flexibility. Moreover, the materials are compatible with major coating and manufacturing methodologies for OLEDs and touch sensors.
“As unique material needs are arising with a new wave of OLED and flexible displays, we see Inkron’s advanced IOC products addressing well the market demand. This technology offers display solutions which are complementary with our current market offering and technology, and is also well suited to the volume manufacturing capabilities at our Nagase’s factory,” said Takahiro Okumura, GM, Electronic Chemicals Department of Nagase & Co., Ltd.
Final products produced under the agreement are being ramped up for volume production during 2016 at Nagase’s factory in Tatsuno, Japan, and will be distributed to all major display manufacturing territories in Asia. Inkron will continue to further develop the materials in its R&D center in Finland as well as to provide key siloxane materials for the selected IOC products.
“Our partnership with Nagase brings us an advanced industrial chemical manufacturing expertise to scale up the production and guarantee security of source for our tier-1 users,” said Inkron CEO Dr. Juha Rantala.