February 22, 2010

Sanken Launches Industry-First Edgelight CCFL Backlight
With Same Power Efficiency as LED TV

Sanken Electric Co., Ltd., today launched the industry's first ever edgelight CCFL backlight. The backlight uses Sanken's newly developed 4th generation CCFLs (cold cathode fluorescent lamps), which are ultra bright and extremely power efficient. The CCFLs are used to create an edgelight backlight system that can be incorporated in 32-inch or larger flat-screen LCD televisions to significantly reduce the power consumption. Sanken will start offering the new backlight units consisting of CCFLs and other peripheral components to customers as a system solution from March 1st.
1. Development Background and Product Overview
  In order to realize an effective level of brightness, most of the CCFL backlights used in LCDs today consist of arrays of CCFLs placed right behind the LCD panel. However, Sanken has now developed a new, 4th generation CCFL that is as thin as current CCFLs (φ4.0 millimeters), but that realizes twice the brightness of Sanken's previous CCFLs. This was achieved by lowering the gas pressure in order to improve and optimize the luminous efficacy, as well as by using a newly developed electrode that could last a long time even in high-current areas. Using just two of these 4th generation CCFLs-one at the top of the LCD panel and one at the bottom-Sanken has achieved the industry's first edgelight CCFL backlight.

Sanken's new backlight unit is a system solution that consists of two CCFLs, a light guide plate, and a range of peripheral components. The light guide plate was developed with the cooperation of a specialist manufacturer and provides enhanced picture quality with flat lighting and uniform brightness. The peripheral components include an optical sheet, reflection sheet, chassis, and lamp reflector. With this new backlight system, Sanken has uniquely combined CCFLs and peripheral components to realize an ideal edgelight backlight design.
2. Applications
  Today's LCD televisions are designed to be slim and environmentally friendly. In order to reduce the power consumption of the backlight used to light the screen from behind, as well as to improve the picture quality, many television manufacturers are switching from CCFL backlights to LED backlights. However, LED backlights have the disadvantage of being expensive to make.

The new edgelight CCFL backlight from Sanken solves all the problems surrounding conventional CCFL backlighting. Sanken's edgelight CCFL backlight has a power consumption rating of only 32 W, which is the same as or lower than that of an LED backlight and only half that of standard direct backlights. It also features a slim profile of 5 millimeters-equivalent to that of an LED backlight and much thinner than the 25 to 35 millimeter-thick direct backlights. More importantly, it can be made for half the cost of an LED backlight.

To complete in today's television market, manufacturers need a backlight that is not only slim and power-efficient, but also inexpensive. Standard direct CCFL backlights are low power consuming and low cost, but bulky. LED backlights are power-efficient and slim, but expensive. On the other hand, Sanken's new edgelight CCFL backlight (using a 4G CCFL system) is slim and power-efficient, as well as low cost, providing the ideal solution to customers in the high-volume 32-inch or larger flat-screen LCD television business.
   Reference information
  ◆Specifications of 4th generation CCFL
Diameter Length Gas Pressure Current Life
φ4.0 26 to 42 inches 20 to 30 Torr*1 From 20 mA
(30% better than previous product)
30,000 to 50,000 hours
(Same as previous product)
*1. Nominal value: The value differs depending on the configuration of the backlight unit.

◆Configuration of edge-light CCFL backlight unit
(1)CCFL (one each on top and bottom)
(2)Light guide plate
(3)Optical sheet
(4)Reflection sheet
(6)Lamp reflector

◆Specifications of edgelight CCFL backlight
Light Source 2 x Straight-tube CCFLs
Backlight (Light Guide Plate) Thickness 5 mm
Backlight Power Consumption 32 W
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