Ultra-slim Corning® Willow™ glass samples available now
Monday, Apr 01, 2013
Corning Incorporated (NYSE:GLW) is supplying customers with samples of Corning® Willow™ Glass, an advanced glass technology that promises to influence the shape and form of next-generation consumer electronic devices, while emerging as the barrier layer material of choice for several market segments; most notably the solar panel industry.
Willow Glass is a thin and flexible glass substrate that will enable low cost manufacturing of ultra-slim, curved and flexible displays, as well as touch sensors. It also has application opportunities outside of display, where its natural hermetic properties combine with its optical transmission qualities to make it appropriate for a host of barrier applications. Willow Glass combines the inherent benefits of glass – optical purity, thermal stability and an exceptionally clean, smooth and flat surface – with a mechanically bendable form factor.
“The early adopters could be in the solar, OLED lighting, display or touch screen industries, due to the outstanding surface characteristics, thermal properties, transmission and hermetic sealing capabilities associated with Willow Glass,” James P. Clappin, Corning Glass Technologies, president, said. “We are confident that we will see ‘conformable’ displays with curved shapes that rely on bendable advanced glass products in the near future. Ultimately, it is our customers and their product application cycles that will drive the commercial timing.”
Corning is investigating solar and other barrier applications, as well as color filter, and touch application market opportunities for Willow Glass in the near term. For the solar industry, Willow Glass can provide a thin hermetic barrier for photovoltaic applications, where its light weight and flexibility could reduce installation costs by 80 percent versus conventional solutions, making it practical for industrial and residential rooftops.
For other barrier applications, Willow Glass’ hermetic properties, combined with its thinness, helps prevent moisture, oxygen, and other environmental elements from damaging appliances. Potential uses range from protecting sensitive electronics within a device to providing a barrier layer for the exterior surfaces of household appliances, such as refrigerators.
The thin and flexible characteristics of Willow Glass can enhance OLED lighting applications by enabling designers to create lighting panels and a wide range of lamp designs that rely on curved or flexible form factors.
In the color filter space, Willow Glass delivers all of the advantages of the display grade glass currently used by color filter makers in a much thinner form factor, enabling thinner displays without the need for expensive etching or polishing steps.
For capacitive touch applications, Willow Glass offers greater optical and electrical performance, and improved registration at a thickness similar to other competing technologies. A single layer design combined with the high throughput of roll-to-roll (R2R) processing could offer lower processing cost without compromising durability.
Source: Corning Inc.