Researchers in China have hit upon a new display type that can transform from a transparent sheet of glass to a screen displaying texts when connected to an electrical circuit. Developed by Yu-Mo Zhang and his colleagues at Jilin University in Changchun, China, the display is envisaged to spawn into an e-reader device sometime in the future though the technology is far from being perfect at the moment.
The e-reader prototype comprises of a pair of glass sheets each being just about a quarter of a millimeter thick. The glasses are laser etched with words while the space between the two glass sheets is filled with a solution of copper ions and molecules of black dye. When an electric current passes through the solution, the dye molecules bond with the copper ions and highlights the black etched words.
The transformation has been found to be reversible, which means the solution returns to its clear state once the electric current is withdrawn. This way, the entire arrangement makes for the thinnest electrochromic display ever produced. Also, the tests shown are of high quality and have just the right color intensity as well.
The display has also been found to perform better when the two glass sheets are combined. However, in the separated state, the solution is found to take a bit longer to fade away and get back to its transparent state than when the two glass sheets are held together.
Experiments with different dyes have also proved to be fruitful. The display performed flawlessly with at least eight dyes which include yellow, cyan, magenta, purple, among others. Modulating the voltage also proved effective in controlling the color-changing process.
However, efforts are on to display a multi-colored image using a combination of dyes. Displaying a single color in varying shades is also going to be important. However, the biggest challenge is going to be the capability to display texts without those being laser-etched on the glass sheets. This way, the same glass panel can be used to display anything you’d like, similar to what e-reader devices are capable of right now.
It is only after this that the technology can be considered fit for use on an e-reader device. In any case, researchers have also envisaged using the display for billboards as well.
With a keen interest in tech, I make it a point to keep myself updated on the latest developments in the world of technology and gadgets. That includes smartphones or tablet devices but stretches to even AI and self-driven automobiles as well, the latter being my latest fad. Besides writing, I like watching videos, reading, listening to music, or experimenting with different recipes. Motion picture is another aspect that interests me a lot and maybe I’ll make a film sometime in the future.