Under the multi-million dollar agreement, Creo will develop prototype thermal imaging equipment for DuPont. Commercialization is anticipated following the development phase wherein Creo will manufacture and supply thermal imaging equipment to DuPont. DuPont will sell complete systems, which will include thermal imaging equipment and color imaging media, to LCD panel and color filter manufacturers. Creo will receive recurring revenues from sales and service of DuPont thermal color filter systems. Both companies have agreed to cooperate on an exclusive and renewable basis in this application of thermal imaging for the manufacture of color filters for LCDs.
The DuPont system will enable LCD panel and color filter manufacturers to produce color filters used for LCDs like those used in the screens of laptop computers, computer monitors and cellular telephones. The Creo supplied imaging equipment will utilize the award-winning SQUAREspot(TM) thermal imaging heads that are used to image printing plates and proofing media for thousands of printers around the world.
"Creo pioneered thermal imaging in the graphic arts and transformed that industry with our SQUAREspot technology," explains Eran Elizur, Creo director of business development. "We are looking forward to working with DuPont to apply this core thermal imaging technology to the flat panel display market. Our approach will use an infrared laser beam to thermally transfer colorants from a donor sheet to a glass substrate to create the multi-color filters that are used in color LCDs." This approach will improve the manufacture of flat panel displays by greatly reducing manufacturing steps, increasing manufacturing flexibility especially for large displays, while reducing cost and waste.
"Creo is a very strong engineering and technology company as evidenced by its success in thermal imaging equipment for the printing and packaging industries," says Brian Eyre, global business manager, thermal imaging, DuPont Imaging Technologies. "We have a good history of working together successfully and we look forward to this new cooperation."