LG Display to mass-produce OLED light panels
KENTARO OGURA, Nikkei staff writer
SEOUL -- LG Display, the world's largest maker of liquid crystal display panels, is taking another step to establish the market for organic light-emitting diodes with its plan to mass-produce OLED panels for lighting starting in the first half of 2017.
To produce the light panels, the South Korean company will invest 140 billion won ($123 million) to install a line at its factory being built to make OLED displays in the industrial city of Gumi. The line will have the capacity to process 15,000 1 meter-by-1.2 meter substrates for OLED light panels a month.
These OLED light panels will be sold by the LG group and also supplied to companies outside of the group with the aim of creating a market for the technology as a means of lighting.
LG Display already makes OLED displays for televisions and smartphones. By also creating a presence in the lighting business, the company aims to nurture OLEDs into a segment on par with its LCD business.
OLED lighting is comparable to LCD lighting in terms of low power consumption and longevity, but the technology also offers bendable surfaces and cool operation.
LG group company LG Chem had been in charge of developing OLEDs for lighting. But this business was transferred at the end of 2015 to LG Display, whose experience with OLED displays may help make such light panels with higher yields, thereby lowering the production costs seen as a hurdle to popularization. LG Display is following through with the investment in mass production originally planned by LG Chem.