Kateeva, the OLED production equipment leader, reported that its YIELDjet™ FLEX system has earned a commanding lead in the key organic layer deposition step in the OLED Thin Film Encapsulation (TFE) market. Since the novel inkjet printing solution debuted in manufacturing in 2014, the company has secured the vast majority of available TFE orders. Customers include the world's largest flat panel display manufacturers located in three key Asia regions.
TFE is a critical step in the flexible OLED manufacturing process. It gives thinness and flexibility to the OLED device, and helps reduce overall manufacturing costs. OLEDs utilizing TFE are revolutionizing the consumer electronics industry by enabling exciting new mobile products that are bendable, foldable and even roll-able. Kateeva's YIELDjet FLEX system helped catalyze the transition to the new display technology by solving key technical challenges that previously made mass-producing OLEDs with TFE, including flexible OLEDs, economically unviable.
Kateeva CEO Alain Harrus attributed the company's market momentum to the swift migration to flexible OLED mass production by display leaders. "That fast manufacturing transition speaks to the spirited innovation within the display industry, where leaders are testing the limits of physics, chemistry and engineering ingenuity, and making substantial R&D investments to commercialize revolutionary displays. We're privileged to partner with these trail-blazing companies, and pleased that our YIELDjet technology is enabling their processes."
The YIELDjet FLEX tool is the first system to emerge from Kateeva's YIELDjet platform. The YIELDjet platform is Kateeva's foundational technology. Introduced in late 2013, it was the first inkjet printing manufacturing equipment platform engineered specifically for OLED mass-production. OLED technology was already transforming rigid smart phone displays with vibrant color and extraordinary image quality. With new high-yield mass-production equipment, OLED technology would enable the next leap—freedom from glass substrates—a breakthrough that would unleash tantalizing new flexible products.
Kateeva's YIELDjet FLEX system has enabled a rapid transition from glass encapsulation to TFE in new OLED production lines. The company's precision deposition solution for the TFE organic layer deposition process is fast, offers good planarization, few particle defects, high material utilization, good scalability, and easy maintenance. These advantages deliver dramatically higher TFE yields and lower mass-production costs, making the system a powerful alternative to vacuum evaporation technologies which had reached their technical limits.
Source and top image: Kateeva