Microled, the technology for the displays of tomorrow

The development of technology based on microleds lasted more than 15 years: an innovative solution that now seems to have reached the level of maturity needed to compete with LCD and LED displays in terms of image quality. Also known as mled, this technology has recently become part of the optoelectronics sector , although it was created in 2000, thanks to two scholars from Texas Technique University. But what are its main peculiarities? Its most notable gift is the surpassing of current standards. Precisely for this reason, the most important operators in the world in the field of entertainment systems and displays have paid close attention to this technology and its development, with numerous prototypes developed.

The structure of a microled display

The LEDs of a microled structure are characterized by minimal dimensions, equal to a few micrometers. In fact, a microled does not exceed the size of a grain of sand, and is more or less a cent larger than the LEDs currently used in traditional displays. The deposit on the substrate of the RGB type LEDs is carried out with specific manufacturing methods that allow to create displays of different sizes. In addition, microleds are distinguished from oleds as they are based on inorganic material.

The principle of self-emission

As with OLEDs , micro LED technology also refers to a self-emission principle by which a wide viewing angle is guaranteed, together with high speed and high contrast. The difference between microled and oled , however, lies in the fact that the former guarantee a higher level of energy efficiency; in addition, their estimated duration is higher. Furthermore, the microled even in situations of very intense ambient light ensure optimal brightness.

Why choose microleds

All these peculiarities mean that the microled are suitable, for example, for wearable devices , for which a low power consumption is required and which are characterized by small screens. This technology finds its flagship in the high levels of brightness. Think that an oled display is able to guarantee more or less a thousand Nits of brightness, while with the same power consumption the microleds reach hundreds of thousands of Nits .

How microleds work

In microleds, the led backlight produces light, which passes through a matrix of liquid crystals in which each of them acts as a single light deflector. At this point, after the light has also passed through the color filters, the various pixels can be turned on. In the case of the oled structure, however, each pixel can be considered a light source of limited size, and their brightness can be managed individually. To create a microled display you need three epitaxial wafers: one for red, one for blue and one for yellow. Starting from these, the singularization phase is carried out, which involves the separation of the microscopic components of the LED . These are then placed on the substrate according to the connections with the transistor matrix which must guarantee their driving.

The history of the microled

During the ISE in February 2019 that took place in Amsterdam, a consumer product whose operation is based on microled technology was presented for the first time to the world. On the occasion of the world's leading event focused on the audio and video sector, those present were able to observe The Wall, a device produced in South Korea with a screen that can reach a size of 292 inches. It is a modular TV that boasts an 8k resolution , probably the pioneer of a long series: other producers in this sector, in fact, are working to develop and launch on the market microled displays of different formats, a revolution in the field advertising billboards and business promotion. Among these there are also small cuts, ideal for the smartwatch sector.

Everything comes from CRT technology

On a historical level, at first the displays were made starting from the technology of cathode ray tubes, that is, that of the first televisions. The introduction of liquid crystals and the subsequent advent of plasma revolutionized the scenario. Versatility and portability were – and are – the strengths of liquid crystal displays, which in addition can boast considerable energy efficiency . Over the years this technology has evolved more and more, with constant improvements that have concerned, for example, the saturation of colors and especially the response times: the early displays, in fact, were not suitable for some applications due to excessive latency times. Finally, a further increase in quality came with LEDs.

The Microled article , the technology for tomorrow's displays comes from Tech CuE | Close-up Engineering .