Thumbnail Image

Challenges and opportunities in flat panel industry

Fuchigami, S.
The Flexible Panel Display (FPD) business is rapidly growing in Asia. Many industrial companies not only from traditional coating industries but from others such as electronics, printing, and film manufacturing industries, arc coming into this business in Japan, Korea, Taiwan and quite possibly in near future, China because of such a high growth opportunity. The total capital investment announced by several key companies, is several billion dollars for next one to two years. Due to the fact of the application to optical (quality) and consumer (cost) products, we have challenges in web handling technology besides coating and drying technologies. For example, the thin film precision coating, which is crucial for display products, requires the precision web handling, which means, for example, the technologies such as the uniform cross web tension of thin film and the scratch free web handling of wide film are essential.
The FPD business will be overviewed and the technological challenges in web handling in combination with coating process will be discussed briefly based on the current and future needs.