At this month's China Information Technology Expo (CITE) event, a headline-maker was the launch of quantum dot televisions, by QD Vision and Konka, the consumer electronics company. QD Vision's calling card in this instance is all about its Color IQ optics. Konka's claim to fame in this instance is as a manufacturer of HDTVs, currently reported to be holding a large share of the Chinese high-end television market. Konka picked CITE as the launch venue for its quantum dot TVs, which are based on QD Vision's Color IQ optics.
The new TV models are high-end with features that include larger size, higher resolution, smart functionality, a wide color gamut, and very slim design. The new models will be available at Chinese retailers later this year. QD Vision, which is headquartered in Lexington, Massachusetts, describes itself as a nanomaterials product company with advanced display and lighting solutions.
Its Color IQ product line harnesses the light-emitting properties of the class of nanomaterials called quantum dots. Cost is one of the attractive features of the technology. Commenting on QD Vision's technology, Zhimao Zhuo, Konka senior product manager, said, "They deliver a unique combination of sleek design and a stunning viewing experience, all for a very compelling price."
QD Vision said that "Quantum dot materials are inherently efficient light emitters, enabling improvements in bills of material and reduced manufacturing complexity for most types of displays and solid-state lighting products. As a result, Color IQ technology lowers the overall cost of production." Color IQ is also promoted by the company as capable of emitting very pure, very saturated, narrow bandwidth light, optimized for display technologies.
Earlier this month, QD Vision introduced a 2mm wide quantum dot optic; the new Color IQ component represents a 33 percent width reduction from the 3mm optic, said the announcement. The company said the newest optical component is compatible with LCD systems using 2mm light guide plates. This in turn supports display manufacturers' drive toward thinner designs and smaller form factors.
As for quantum dot technology, Dr. Jennifer Colegrove, CEO and principal analyst at Touch Display Research, said the technology was "one of the biggest breakthroughs for LCD developments in recent years. We are forecasting that, by 2025, 60 percent of TVs will feature quantum dots."
Nanalyze, a site focused on companies involved in "disruptive technologies," said that quantum dots, the tiny bits of semiconductor crystals less than 10 nanometers in size, show "remarkable properties that open up a broad array of applications such as biological tagging, LEDs, displays, and even solar cells."
In a March article in MIT News, Denis Paiste reported that "Solar cells made out of lead sulfide quantum dots could eventually offer a cheaper, more flexible alternative to ones made using silicon, but they are currently much less efficient. However, altering the chemical composition of quantum-dot solar cells offers a way of tuning them to reach higher efficiencies."
He was referring to comments by MIT physics graduate student, Patrick Brown. "Instead of starting with a high-efficiency technology and then trying to make it cheaper, which is what we're doing now with silicon, our plan is to start with something that we know we could make cheaply and see if we could make it more efficient," Brown said.