The Georgia Institute of Technology researchers led by Wusheng Tong said they used ion assisted deposition to produce a high-density, pinhole-free thin silicon oxynitride film on an OLED surface.
"OLEDs have better color and flexibility and the capability of larger displays but companies still need an inexpensive encapsulation method that can be used to mass produce organic electronics that don't allow moisture in," said Tong, a senior research scientist at the Georgia Tech Research Institute.
Manufacturers now seal displays in an inert atmosphere or in a vacuum environment, Tong said. They glue a glass lid on top of the display substrate with a powder inside the display to absorb moisture. But the seals are expensive and labor-intensive to assemble.
Tong, Hisham Menkara and Brent Wagner replaced the glass enclosure with a thin-film barrier formed by a less expensive conventional deposition method.
"We've demonstrated this deposition process improves the lifetime of the OLEDs … so now we're hoping to work with industry partners to develop a mass production process for our encapsulation technique," said Tong.
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