The ISRA systems will be installed in production plants in Asia and Europe during the current fiscal year. They will inspect ultrathin glass of generation 7, as it is being used for the production of modern flat panel displays, for defects of a size down to a few micrometers. The inspected glass sheets measure over 2.0 m and are only half a millimeter thick. This highly demanding market segment is particularly attractive for ISRA because it currently grows by more than 30% p.a. Today ISRA is already market leader in the inspection general flat glass.
Manufacturing FPD glass includes many process steps, such as the production of the thin glass and several mechanical and electronic processing steps. Currently, the ISRA systems are being employed only in specific steps, such as the production of the glass substrate and in subsequent steps. They search the glass for defects such as inclusions, scratches, edge defects, coating defects and for defects in the electronic layers. The systems identify and measure the defects and determine their position. The systems are equipped with state-of-the-art high-resolution cameras and FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array)-based processor technology in order to process the immense amounts of data in acceptable cycle times.
The display glass activities are part of SURFACE VISION, ISRA's bigger division, which has grown strongly during the past fiscal year 2004/2005: Total output has increased 32%, before-tax profit almost 90%. ISRA expects display glass inspection to generate important growth impulses in the current fiscal year, in particular because the Company enjoys a good competitive position with its presence in Asia, which will soon be further strengthened. In order to fully exploit the potential of the display glass growth market, ISRA will expand its product range to cover as well the high-ROI process steps in the later stages of the production process. For fiscal year 2005/2006, ISRA-Group expects to continue along its double-digit profitable growth path.