Liquid crystal displays are manufactured on flat rigid substrates where the liquid crystals position between pixel electrodes and counter-electrodes. Flat is important, because bending produces unequal distances between electrodes. This difference results in color irregularities. Omron Corp.'s Material Development Department (part of the Electronic Components Business Company) is challenging the production limitation. Using a vacuum impregnation technique, Omron has demonstrated the ability to insert liquid crystals into a polymer film consisting of approximately 0.5-micron diameter spherical polyacrylate particles. Because the polymer network is finer than than conventional self-supported polymer/liquid crystal composite film, it allows a uniform color across a display whether the display is bent or not. Other potential applications for this capability include light-diffusion film, reflection film, and ink jet printing paper. For further details, contact Christopher_udell@omron.co.jp.
Many scientists have been working battery-free ways to power wearable electronics that can replace bulky battery packs, particularly through the use of energy-harvesting materials. Now a team of researchers in China have upped the game by developing a lightweight and flexible solar cell that can be woven into two-way energy-harvesting fabric.
A Tokyo company, Miraisens Inc., has unveiled a device that allows users to move virtual 3D objects around and "feel" them via a vibration sensor. The device has many applications within the gaming, medical, and 3D-printing industries.
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