A team of researchers from Nottingham Trent University, the Australian National University and the University of New South Wales in Canberra has come up with a proof-of-concept technology that could shake up the foundations of the $100 billion-plus display, monitor and TV industry .
By swapping the traditional liquid crystal cells used in such devices with a new technology called metasurfaces (these are arrays of electrically tunable nanoparticles), the researchers claim this will “offer significant advantages over current liquid crystal displays.” .
what is the benefit? Well, there are many.
Metasurfaces are much smaller in size (up to 10 times smaller) than crystalline cells, which translates into significantly smaller pixel pitches and – in theory – higher pixel densities.Pixels packed tightly together means more seamless, ultra-realistic graphics, perfect for creative professionals who crave this kind of innovation photo editing monitor (opens in a new tab).
“Today, the main factor determining the pixel size of LCD and LED displays is the limitation of liquid crystal technology: they are thick, and they cannot be too small and too close together due to crosstalk between adjacent pixels. Our technology does not have this limitation,” NTU Professor Mohsen Rahmani, head of the Advanced Optics and Photonics (AOP) Laboratory and one of the project’s contributors, told TechRadar Pro in an email.
The new technology also allows for higher refresh rates, with the press release stating that “by changing the temperature of the material, the light can be switched nearly 20 times faster than the human aversion reaction time.” The detection limit of the human eye is about 13 milliseconds or 78 hertz, But displays using metasurfaces could potentially achieve refresh rates in excess of 1,000 hertz, far higher than anything currently on the market—a big deal. gaming monitor (opens in a new tab).
There’s also the fact that the technology uses silicon, which means longer life, lower production costs, and lower power consumption. Switching to silicon could also make thinner cells, reducing weight and thickness (by as much as 99 percent) and potentially paving the way for wider applications.
Availability and price still unknown
The key to the transition will depend on how quickly and easily current LCD panel production lines can adapt to the new technology.
I asked Professor Rahmani how close we are to having commercial devices. “With good investment, we expect to have a usable product in about 5 years. Our technology is compatible with the production lines of LCD, LED displays. Therefore, it does not need to develop the production line from scratch. We believe it will be easy because from Technically, we only need to replace the liquid crystal cells with metasurface cells. The other layers in the display (light source, color filters, etc.) remain the same (note that we no longer need the polarizing layer)”.
Therefore, metasurface units do not affect other properties of the display panel, nor do they affect the size of the panel or the total number of pixels on the panel: 8K TV (opens in a new tab) There are more than 33 million of them.
Metasurfaces have been hailed by many as the next big thing because of their unique light-scattering properties. A quick glance at my email inbox reveals that studies have been done to gauge its suitability for a plethora of use cases: low cost, high efficiency solar cells, better motion sensors, 6G transmission materials, high density storage, etc. wait.