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26 April 2019

VerLASE extends IP base to mass-transfer technology for micro-LED displays

VerLASE Technologies LLC of Bridgewater, NJ, USA (which was spun off from technology development firm Versatilis LLC of Shelburne, VT, USA in 2013) says that it is developing unique technologies for massively parallel assembly of micro-LED dies or films (the central challenge in micro-LED display manufacturing currently hindering wide-spread adoption of micro-LED technology).

Many observers point to the inherent advantages of micro-LEDs such as brightness, efficiency, robustness, and a vision of modular panels that could be tiled into displays of any size. Despite being a superior technology in theory which, for example, overcomes the many problems surrounding organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays, micro-LED displays have been bedeviled by practical manufacturing aspects, notes VerLASE. Among these, perfectly assembling the micro-LED subpixels (which can be 10µm or even smaller) in a commercially viable way on a switching backplane remains a huge, unsolved problem.

Several companies (including a few start-ups) have shown various approaches to solving this problem at trade shows and conferences. However, the proposed methods seem too slow to be cost effective and generally offer no apparent way of repair and replace, since displays must be perfect with no misplaced pixels, notes VerLASE. The micro-LED display prototypes shown to date also tend to have lower resolutions (PPI) than might be needed today, for example, for a typical smartphone display or 8K display.

VerLASE says that it is focused on practical methods that use well-proven semiconductor and MEMS industry methods and existing tools in novel ways to enable deterministic, massively parallel transfers of micro-die, yet with provisions that allow selective repair. The methods employ well-developed techniques used daily in ink-jet printing (although it is not printing per se). Comprehensive patent filings cover multiple variations of the firm’s proprietary core Large Area Assembly Process (LAAP). “In levering the ink-jet industry, our solution offers a quick path for micro-LEDs to disrupt the displays industry,” believes Ajay Jain, chief technology officer and inventor of the technology.

The firm is working on demonstrating the base principles of its solution while being in discussions with potential investors. VerLASE had previously been focused on color conversion technology for micro-LEDs and related applications (which remains a core capability) but decided to broaden the horizon, given its novel solution to the mass-transfer problem. It has seven US patents now issued covering various aspects in color conversion (including some in Japan, Korea and China) with others pending. The firm has now also filed a suite of IP relating to its mass-transfer solution.

The patents that are issued encompass VerLASE’s Chromover branded color conversion technology, which can efficiently downconvert colors from inexpensive, widely available blue/violet light sources such as LEDs, micro-LEDs or laser diodes to any color in the visible range for a wide variety of applications, to novel materials used both passively (as phosphors) and actively (as the electroluminescent layer in light engines of the near future).

See related items:

VerLASE awarded further patents in US and Japan for use of 2D materials in light sources

VerLASE awarded US patent on 2D materials enabling downconversion of InGaN-based blue/violet emitters to any color

VerLASE extends patent portfolio in 2D semiconductor materials for light sources

Tags: microLED

Visit:  www.verlase.com

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