Thursday, 29 January 2015

Flexible Screens in The Future, Thanks to Improvements in Transistors

| Thursday, January 29, 2015 | | | Be first to comment!

Organic electronic building blocks are being researched upon extensively as they hold a lot of potential when it comes to building devices as they require less energy and will be cost effective. But the most promising feature concerning developments using the organic FETs(Field Effect Transistor) is the mechanical compatibility, meaning development of devices with flexible nature. Progress in this field has already given out a new paradigm, “Plastic Electronics”, which directly counters the existing “Silicon electronics”. A recent review published in Science and Technology Of Advanced Materials reports optical functionalities being integrated in the conventional transistors. Researchers also claimed that these improvements should soon be expected in manufacturing of transistors which can be used to develop paper-thin and flexible screens.

After its introduction back in 2003, there has been a lot of improvements in developing the organic field effect transistors(OFET). OFETs were first developed to give out low cost large size display screens. But the latest reviews suggest improvements in light emitting organic field effect transistors (LE-OFET). LE-OFET combine functionalities of both, the OLEDs and the OFETs. These photoactive organic field effect transistors are said to possess the properties of amplifying weak signals and of receiving light too. Field effect carrier mobility of LE-OFETs has reached 20 cm^2/Vs which makes them good enough to be used in practical applications.

The review article also suggests that light emission efficiency and brightness of these transistors will soon improve. The next versions of the LE-OFETs are supposed to be compatible with the already existing electronic setups. LE-OFETs are also being used to develop transparent and flexible computer screens. With this said one can also think of their extensive use in smartphones too. These display units are said to offer faster response time and better energy efficiency. Above all these features, such display units inculcating LE-OFETs won’t require any backlight. This being said it is implied that the power consumption is bound to go down. They are also assumed to enable the development of optical communications and optoelectronic systems, since the switching rates of these transistors is quite good.

Japanese researchers also said that there are some issues in these components and a collaborative effort by organic chemists and device physicists is required to resolve these stumbling blocks. These developments would definitely open new frontiers for both electronic and photonic worlds with properties like flexibility, light weight, optical memory storage or high-density data storage. While it is speculated that such devices with all-plastic components and flexible nature will still take a decade to become ready for the users, you can only hope for its speedy development.