Low-cost, digital displays through ink jet printing?

(December 23, 2003) Palo Alto, Calif.—Convergent technology is one thing, but using your computer’s printer to make a new TV screen? Not quite, but close. In a breakthrough for low-cost electronics manufacturing, researchers at Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), a Xerox subsidiary, have successfully created a transistor array of the type used to control a flat-panel display using a modified ink-jet printer and semiconductor “ink.”

Still under development, the technique is expected to dramatically lower the cost of the popular displays by replacing more expensive photolithography techniques that dominate display manufacturing. The new technology, co-funded by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), is expected to work on either rigid or flexible substrates, and could create whole new opportunities for wall-sized TV’s, unbreakable cell phone displays, computer displays that could roll up like a window shade and electronic paper.

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