Manufacturers have been incorporating quantum dots into LED displays for some time, but are also working on screens consisting entirely of them. This technology could become efficient and cheap enough to replace LCD and OLED, while expanding the scope of digital display applications.
At CES 2023, the American company Nanosys, which created the Quantum Dot technology known to us from TV sets, among others. Samsung, held a “top secret” demonstration of its latest work on electroluminescent quantum dots – a candidate for the next major display technology. Nanosys has not released any photos from the CES show, but the future range of applications for the new technology is expected to be very wide.
Considered extremely efficient because they emit almost all the light they absorb, quantum dots produce light when energized and give off different colors depending on their size. Screen manufacturers only use red, blue and green quantum dots, but other colors are also possible.
Quantum dots already form “Q” in QLED and “QD” in QD-OLED displays. Until now, these photoluminescent quantum dots, which receive energy from light, have only played second fiddle to more mature display technologies.
Nanosys’ electroluminescent screens would only use quantum dots powered by electricity. They could significantly reduce energy consumption and production costs, while at least matching the image quality and brightness of QD-OLED technology.
The prototype shown at CES was just a six-inch screen attached to a complicated set of wires, but the electroluminescent quantum dot displays could be scaled to different sizes. Manufacturers could use them in large-screen TVs, smartphone displays, VR headsets and more.
Moreover, the performance and low cost of electroluminescent quantum dots could make them viable for use on a wide variety of surfaces that would normally not become screens. Nanosys believes that this technology can significantly advance augmented reality by working with transparent objects.
The Nanosys website features graphics of heads-up displays, advertisements, and other information displayed on windows, car windows, and other glass materials, which you can view in the gallery below. CNET speculates that electroluminescent quantum dot displays could show drivers important information on their windshields without taking their eyes off the road, or create AR experiences over regular glasses.
Nanosys admits that quantum dot translucent electroluminescent displays are probably still a few years away. The format in which they appear first will depend on which screen manufacturers are willing to use the technology first: in TVs, phones, VR, or something else.