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unswsydney OP t1_j9m8a13 wrote

G'day r/science! A team of our researchers, alongside ANU and Nottingham Trent University colleagues have developed a proof-of-concept technology that could eventually supersede LCDs and LED.

The tech – which has extraordinary light scattering properties – would replace the liquid crystal layer and would not require the polarisers, which are responsible for half of wasted light intensity and energy use in displays.

“Our pixels are made of silicon, which offers a long life span in contrast with organic materials required for other existing alternatives. Moreover, silicon is widely available, CMOS* compatible with mature technology, and cheap to produce.”

You can take a deep dive into the research paper here:


tornpentacle t1_j9maa6n wrote

Hmm, light scattering? I'm not in this field, does anyone mind explaining what that means in this context? It sounds like it wouldn't yield a clear display, but that doesn't seem to be the case based on the context—hence my curiosity!


Wizardof_oz t1_j9nof46 wrote

I’m guessing it works similarly to how a chameleon changes color or how peacock feathers shine blue

A chameleon’s skin doesn’t show colors through pigments. It rather changes structure to scatter light at different wavelengths, trapping some light, while letting some of it through, showing colors.

I’m just guessing that’s how this tech works though. I always wondered why we didn’t go in that direction to create color anyways. Might not be what’s going on here


Fishydeals t1_j9o7cc4 wrote

I think that should highlight the supposedly excellent viewing angles of this display technology. Really not sure though.


unswsydney OP t1_j9qo157 wrote

Hi there u/tornpentacle, here's a response from Prof Andrey Miroshnichenko, a lead researcher in the Nanophotonics team at UNSW Canberra.


>LCD screens use backlight illumination, and light propagates through a liquid crystal cell before entering our eyes. By changing the properties of the liquid crystal cell, the light can be blocked or not. Here we eliminate the relatively thick liquid crystal cell, maintaining the ability to control light propagation properties, making it thinner and lighter.


BellerophonM t1_j9nach4 wrote

What's the overall thermal profile of such a device at screen sizes given that it's based on flash heating elements?


financialmisconduct t1_j9nq0dd wrote

These are emissive only right?

Could they potentially be worked into a reflective display?


DigiMagic t1_j9odemj wrote

Your tech does not require polarizers, but requires heaters. What is the total final efficiency, compared to LCDs? Why are you expecting that something heated up to 200 Celsius (and constantly re-heated and re-cooled?) will have a long life span?


red75prime t1_j9oh8jf wrote

Could you clarify this passage? "We believe it is time for LCD and LED displays to be phased out"

I understand LCD part, but LED? You still need light source for your tunable metasurface display.


UniversalMomentum t1_j9oypsw wrote

LED is an LCD display with LED lights instead of fluorescent. They are really just LED-lit LCD displays. The LED allows more even lighting, more brightness and longer lifespan in theory.


hellure t1_jacf8bt wrote

but OLED? Which is better, this or that?