ELECTRONICS

Plessey moves to develop monolithic microLED

Plessey Semiconductor intends to be the first to market a monolithic microLED based display fabricated using a GaN on silicon approach. 

Michael LeGoff, CEO, said: “By being the first to market with a monolithic microLED display, we will be demonstrating our expertise and the ability to access our proven turn-key solution, enabling manufacturers to ramp up the development and production of microLED displays to address emerging applications.”

One of the main challenges involved with manufacturing microLED displays using a non-monolithic approach is the placement of LED chips onto a CMOS backplane, currently achieved using pick and place equipment. This involves the individual placement of every LED on a pitch of less than 50μm, requiring new and expensive equipment that is subject to productivity issues. As the pixel density of displays increases and pitch reduces, pick and place becomes less feasible both commercially and technically.

Moving to a monolithic process removes the need for chip placement and will enable smaller and higher resolution displays for a range of applications.

Dr Keith Strickland, CTO, added: “GaN on silicon is the only technology that makes sense in terms of scalability and performance. It offers better thermal conductivity than sapphire and higher luminosity than OLED, which is why this technology is widely acknowledged to be the only one that can deliver high resolution, high luminance displays.”

Plessey has also started a programme that will see the company license its GaN on silicon expertise to microLED manufacturers.

Author
Bethan Grylls

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