We report on unique flexible ReflexTM displays based on bistable, reflective, cholesteric liquid crystal display
technology. Reflex displays are attractive for numerous applications because of the low power consumption and paper
like reflective color. As the possible applications grow for flexible, reflective displays the new methods to manufacture
these displays, such as web processing, also become important. We will report on several unique display types such as a
pressure induced writing display and a switchable color electronic skin display. In addition, the current status of
traditional Reflex displays will be discussed.
Flexible Cholesteric liquid crystal displays have been rapidly maturing into a strong contender in the flexible display
market. Encapsulation of the Cholesteric liquid crystal permits the use of flexible plastic substrates and roll-to-roll
production. Recent advances include ultra-thin displays, laser-cut segmented displays of variable geometry, and smart
card applications. Exciting technologies such as simultaneous laser-edge sealing and singulation enable high volume
production, excellent quality control and non-traditional display geometries and formats.
Bistable reflective cholesteric displays are a liquid crystal display technology developed to fill a market need for very low power displays. Their unique look, high reflectivity, bistability, and simple structure make them an ideal flat panel display choice for handheld or other portable devices where small lightweight batteries with long lifetimes are important. Applications ranging from low resolution large signs to ultra high resolution electronic books can utilize cholesteric displays to not only benefit from the numerous features, but also create enabling features that other flat panel display technologies cannot. Flexible displays are the focus of attention of numerous research groups and corporations worldwide. Cholesteric displays have been demonstrated to be highly amenable to flexible substrates. This paper will review recent advances in flexible cholesteric displays including both phase separation and emulsification approaches to encapsulation. Both approaches provide unique benefits to various aspects of manufacturability, processes, flexibility, and conformability.
This paper highlights recent advances toward flexible cholesteric displays including new night vision applications for military use and full color. Particular emphasis is paid to recently developed encapsulated cholesteric liquid crystals that are necessary for printing and coating the materials as well as prevent erasure of the image during flexing or handling the display. The paper presents recent results from encapsulation of cholesteric materials using polymerization induced phase separation and their progression towards thin flexible plastic based cholesteric displays. Several other key issues in the transition from smooth rigid glass substrates to flexible plastic substrates including spacing control and preparation of surfaces are discussed. Lastly, the night vision mode and night vision applications of cholesteric displays are also presented.
Bistable reflective cholesteric displays are a liquid crystal display technology developed to fill a market need for very low power displays on a low-cost, high resolution passive matrix. Their unique look, high reflectivity, bistability, and simple structure make them an ideal flat panel display choice for handheld or other portable devices where small lightweight batteries with long lifetimes are important. We discuss recent advances in cholesteric display technology at Kent Displays such as progress towards single layer black and white displays, standard products, lower cost display modules, and various interface options for cholesteric display applications. It will be shown that inclusion of radio frequency (rf) control options and serial peripheral interface (spi) can greatly enhance the cholesteric display module market penetration by enabling quick integration into end devices. Finally, some discussion will be on the progress of the development of flexible reflective cholesteric displays. These flexible displays can dramatically change industrial design methods by enabling curved surfaces with displays integrated in them. Additional discussion in the paper will include applications of various display modes including signs, hand held instrumentation, and the electronic book and reader.