Researchers develop light-emitting paper for flexible displays

Posted May 21, 2015 by James Walker
Chinese researchers have successfully created a sheet of light-emitting, transparent and flexible paper with a new eco-friendly manufacturing technique. The paper could be used to create truly flexible displays for bendable gadgets of the future.
Chinese researchers have created a sheet of light-emitting foldable paper
Chinese researchers have created a sheet of light-emitting foldable paper
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces journal
The paper glows and emits light at room temperature. It can be rolled, unrolled and folded like normal paper but does not crack or shatter. It continues to emit light even when folded.
UPI reports the research was led by Yu-Zhong Wang and Fei Song, material scientists from Sichuan University. The technology could give phone, tablet and wearable manufacturers the ability to make their devices more versatile, eco-friendly and lighter by using a sheet of paper instead of the usual glass.
It is built by mixing clear paper with nanoscale quantum dots that act as semiconductor crystals in a technique known as suction-filtration. The quantum dots allow the paper to emit light.
The process is more eco-friendly than that used by a similar sheet of light-emitting paper developed by Swedish scientists late last month.
Created by Ludvig Eman and colleagues, that method involved spraying an ordinary piece of paper with an adhesive, four layers of a special solution that glows when electrified and then a topping of sealant. It was intended to be suitable for use in small applications such as food labels that glow when the contents are unsafe to eat and could not be folded.
Writing in the American Chemical Society's Applied Materials and Interfaces journal, Wang and Song say of their development: "This material can bring a new thinking on future electronic displays and 3D printing papers."
The project was funded by sources including the Research Fund for the Doctoral Program of Higher Education of China and the National Natural Science Foundation of China. It represents another step forward to achieving the production of a true bendable display, suitable for use in books or magazines with glowing images and changing advertisements.