IDTechEx was one of the speakers of the recent Plastic Electronics 2012 OLED session in Dresden, Germany, alongside the SEMICON Europe exhibition. Cathleen Thiele, Technology Analyst at IDTechEx GmbH, presented IDTechEx forecasts for OLED Lighting compared to LED lighting.
The majority of the OLED market is still driven by OLED displays. Compared to that, the OLED Lighting market is very much in its infancy, with rather expensive OLED luminaires and lamps commercially available as samples or used in design installation, but no mass production is in place, yet. Nevertheless, OLED lighting attracted a lot of interest and investment in the last couple of years and virtually all lighting companies are involved in OLED research and development. If OLED lighting is to suceed in penetrating only a small portion of the global lighting market, revenues could be in the millions. In fact, IDTechEx forecasts a $200-300M annual opportunity for OLED lighting in the next 2-3 years.
Compared to other forecasts, IDTechEx gives a much more conservative view predicting $400 million revenue in OLED Lighting in 2017, with only 3% being printed and only 9% being flexible. Going forward, this is expected to double and even tripple in 2022.
The next big topic for OLED lighting R&D is the development of flexible panels resulting in first products by 2015. This is driven by and will benefit from the flexibility trend for OLED displays, which will drive the development of better and cheaper flexible barriers, a key bottleneck for the technology, in the next couple of years.
Other key challenges ahead are investment for larger area device manufacturing to lower the panel cost, reduction of material costs (esp. for glass, edge barriers etc), improved yield, the availability of low cost, and differentiated product design and marketing from LED lighting.
Other highlights from the OLED session:
Hans-Peter Loebel presented the companies Lumiblade OLED lighting products with variing shades of white, colour and shape, that have been demonstrated in large installations like the LivingShapes interactive wall and large ceiling luminares at the Light & Building 2012. For their stacked hybrid white OLEDs the companies product-performance roadmap targets an efficiency of up to 130 lumen per Watt by 2018, along with a lifetime of 40,000 hours LT70 at 3000 cd/sqm, and an intensity of over 5,000 cd/sqm (using no optimization on efficiency, lumen output or lifetime). Currently, they acchieve over 60 lumen per Watt, which they see as close to 'good enough'. According to Mr Loebel, the key challenges to be used in General Lighting applications are a good lumen package and lower costs.
Novel Developments of PIN OLEDs for lighting as well as display applications where shown by Sven Murano. He presented a new material for blue pixel of AMOLED displays and n-doped ETL (Electron Transport Layer) systems with air-stable n- dopants (Electron Transport Layer). Key challenges Novaled is trying to solve with this, in order to meet the demanding price and perfomance targets of the lighting market, are a suitable light extraction method for OLEDs, that is cheap with no costly substrates or pre-treatments involved, more efficiency through minimized losses, compatibility to industrial large area processes, and ability to deliver high quality light. With a three unit stacked white OLED an efficiency improvement from 50 to 60 lm/W was shown, including the new outcoupling enhancement material NET61 that allows for extraction of internal light modes (60 lm/W and LT50=90.000 hours lifetime). Also, the evaporation based material is fully compatible to existing manufacturing processes.
Recent progress of white OLED technologies at Panasonic was presented by Mr Takuya Komoda. This included the development of a light outcoupling substrate with high-n structure with an outcoupling efficiency of over 40 %, and all phosphorescent white OLEDs on this light outcoupling substrate with over 100 lumen per Watt and LT50 of a 1cm2 emission area. Compared to the largely used hybrid approach (phosphorescent green and red combined with a fluorescent blue emitter) Panasonic sees the all phosphorescet system with light outcoupling as the winning technology that could lift OLED lighting to the next stage.
A hybrid approach to luminares combining OLEDs and LEDs was demonstrated by Mr Hideki Ohkawa. OLED luminaries have not acquried mainstream acceptance, yet, which is why Toshiba sees a hybrid approach to be the market entry solution for OLED lighting. According to Mr Ohkawa, LEDs and OLEDs complement each other and could be the solution to respond to customers's increasing needs and personalized requirements in the lighting market.
Source: Toshiba Lighting & Technology Corporation.
At the forthcoming Printed Electronics USA 2012 conference & exhibition www.printedelectronicsusa.com OLED Lighting as well as New Progess in Barrier Films, Printed Electronics Manufacturing, Flexible & Bistable Displays and more will be discussed in great detail. The event will be held on December 5-6 in the heart of silicon valley at Santa Clara, CA, USA. For further information and registration see www.PrintedElectronicsUSA.com
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