LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) flat panel displays technically revolutionized the market and replaced the bulky and heavy CRT televisions.
The first LCD panels appeared on laptops in the mid-1980s. In that same time frame, LCD computer monitors became available and in 2003 exceeded sales of CRTs for the first time.
Today, we find flat panel displays all around us in many areas of our lives such as smartphones, tablets, automotive and others.
Back in 1990 the glass size of Generation GEN1 (200-300 x 200-400 mm) was brought to production. Since then the dimensions grew continuously larger until reaching GEN11 (2340 x 3370 mm) in 2018.
With the increase in production, the size of LCD TVs grew every year. As the size expanded, so did the technical demands on production machinery suppliers for glass handling, transport and coating.
Throughout this time, we were the partner and vacuum solution provider for the coating machine manufacturers (OEMs) and the producer of flat panel displays, working closely together to develop tailor made solutions for the individual process steps.
Our strengths are our reliable vacuum solutions for fast cycling load lock chambers. Based on decades of experience, we have developed the POWERBOOST systems especially for this application, to be used in fast inline systems.
From around 2010, the backlight technology in LCD TV was changed from a cold cathode fluorescent lamp to a dynamic LED backlight, which brought LCD technology into the leading position.
Around 5 years later the new technology OLED (organic light emitting diode) was ready for mass production and established itself as the alternative to LCD. The advantages here are lower cost, light weight, flexibility, better energy efficiency and better picture quality, especially for black color.
The requirements for cleanliness and the absolute water-free demand in OLED production bring another challenge for pump suppliers, as cryogenic pumps become a must in combination with dry and oil-free screw vacuum pumps.