SmartKem in Manchester, UK, is using the funds to accelerate the adoption of organic semiconductors as a universal thin film transistor (TFT) backplane platform for the mass manufacture of flexible and curved mobile, embedded and large area OLED and LCD displays. The company provides organic semiconductors for the low temperature, solution coat production of high performance TFTs on plastic, which can be used for ultra-flexible TFTs and for transistors that deliver simplified pixel drive circuitry through high transistor electrical stability. This also provides a reduction in power consumption in any display format, translating to weekly and not daily charging of mobile OLED and LCD display based devices such as smartwatches and smartphones.
The two year project will focus on the industrialisation and transfer of SmartKem's organic semiconductor platform over large area plastic substrates using standard slit coat processing. The main objective will be to maintain electrical and physical uniformity and quality of transistor performance over large area formats for mass production on existing production lines in Asia.
The requirements for the project deliverables are driven by a number of commercial agreements that SmartKem have with display OEMs for the adoption of its platform for flexible display manufacture. The success of the project will ensure a strong European position in the supply of specialised, high value materials to this new, high growth sector of the display industry in Asia.