Coordinated by Holst Centre/TNO, the three-year project brings together commercial and research partners from Europe and Israel to tackle one of the most pressing issues in organic electronics – ensuring high enough yields for cost-effective manufacturing.
The Clean4Yield consortium partners will work to develop new technologies capable of inspecting moving foils for micro- and nanoscale dust particles and defects, and for cleaning / repairing layers as necessary in large-scale roll-to-roll production of OLEDs and OPVs.
In order to produce OLEDs and OPVs devices are low costs requires high-volume roll-to-roll processes. This means device manufacturers will be looking to achieve production yields above 95% to minimise the wastage of expensive production materials.
The big challenge is ensuring no dust particles are present. Organic electronic devices are constructed as layers that are only 100-300 nm in thickness which means that a single dust particle can make a connection between adjacent layers, causing the final device to malfunction.
Meeting these yield requirements will require advanced contamination and defect control. Such issues are well-known in traditional silicon-based electronics. However the larger areas, and moving, flexible substrates of roll-to-roll processes mean existing techniques cannot be easily transferred.
Project coordinator Juliane Gabel of Holst Centre, said, “The EU recognized an urgent need for these technologies, and that developing them here will provide long-term opportunities for Europe’s instrumentation and equipment industries. Clean4Yield will deploy a holistic approach to address problems that are common to both OLEDs and OPVs, and which have relevance to other areas of flexible electronics.”
Consortium members are:
- TNO / Holst Centre (Netherlands)
- Coatema Coating Machinery GmbH (Germany)
- Dr. Schenk GmbH Industriemesstechnik (Germany)
- Technical University of Denmark(Denmark)
- DuPont Teijin Films (United Kingdom)
- Horiba JobinYvon SAS (France)
- IBS Precision Engineering (Netherlands)
- Teknek Limited (United Kingdom)
- InnoPhysics BV (Netherlands)
- Philips Technologie GmbH (Germany)
- Bayer MaterialScience (Germany)
- Eight19 Limited (United Kingdom)
- Bayer Technology Services (Germany)
- Thermosensorik GmbH (Germany)
- Delft University of Technology (Netherlands)
- Orbotech Inc. (Israel)
Funded through the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), the Clean4Yield project will run for 36 months beginning May 1, 2012.