Organic Semiconductors: An advanced, high value UK product acquiring a global reach Organic Semiconductors (OSC) are materials made up from mainly Carbon and Hydrogen, and have been developed for applications in displays, lighting, logic and photovoltaic applications.
To date Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) displays have already developed into a $3Bn global market, making the active materials chemistry an integral part of the supply chain to an industry that many have predicted to grow to >$40Bn in the next 10 years.
Materials Synthesis & Design
Through a project called the Northern Way, CPI worked with 4 SME chemical companies in the North of England to develop synthetic procedures to large-scale quantities of OSCs. This work was carried out over 18 months and resulted in the availability of 100 g batches of high purity, high performance and novel OSCs.
Other key achievements were:
- Supply chain formation in North of England
- Kg scale synthesis of intermediates
- Education of synthetic teams in the materials — requirements for electronic materials
- Development of design rules for OSCs
Formulation into FlexOS® product
The high quality materials synthesised need to be formulated to allow solution processing of the materials. Liquid coating is a key advantage of organic electronics and should allow for manufacturing using low cost, additive, low temperature coating techniques such as spin coating, ink-jet printing and roll-to-roll coating.
Applications & the future of FlexOS®
Product development using OTFTs is already underway and a number of the major electronics companies are actively involved in developing this area of research, particularly for use in display applications. The OTFTs can be used for the backplane array which is involved in switching pixels.
The low temperature processing with FlexOS® means that the use of the plastic substrates is now viable. This is unlike the current a‑Si technologies, which use high temperature vacuum deposition technologies for fabrication.
The aim for the FlexOS® formulation is to develop it commercially to a stage where it can be used in a fully flexible OLED display.