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Agilent color management system offers 25 percent more brilliant colors

Posted: 03 Feb 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:agilent color management? color LCD backlighting? tv flat-panel?

An enhanced viewing pleasure is what the new Illumination and Color Management (ICM) system from Agilent Technologies Inc. promises.

Designed to work with high-power Luxeon (red, green and blue LEDs) from Lumileds Lighting (a joint venture between Agilent and Philips Electronics), the ICM system for backlighting LCD flat-panel TVs delivers 25 percent more brilliant colors that current fluorescent backlighting.

"For years, manufacturers have struggled with how to provide a sharper, more natural color tone for their LCD TV displays," said Soo-Ghee Lee, VP and GM for the Optoelectronic Products Division in Agilent's Semiconductor Products Group. "Agilent has solved this technology problem. Now consumers watching flat-panel TVs will be able to see all colors of the rainbow brighter and clearer for a more exciting viewing experience."

Move over CCFLs
Currently, most flat-panel LCD television displays are backlighted using cold-cathode fluorescent lamps (CCFLs). Although cheaper than LEDs and with lower power consumption, CCFLs gradually degrade in brightness and change color with time. In addition, an RGB LED backlight is able to present more realistic images because it has a wider color gamut104% of NTSCcompared to CCFL's 75%.

Heng-Yow Cheng, product manager for Agilent's Optotelectronic Products Division, believes that the move from the usage of CCFLs to LEDs in flat panel TVs will happen in the near future because "RGB LEDs allow LCD TV manufacturers to enjoy added design flexibility in differentiating their products from the competition."

"It also enables more new functions to be integrated into the LCD TV, which has never been possible with CCFL technology," Cheng added.

Furthermore, the use of LEDs also enables manufacturers to comply with various environmental regulations banning the use of mercury in fluorescent backlighting.

System parts
Agilent's HDJD-JB01 ICM system consists of the HDJD-J822-SCR00 color management controller and the HDJD-S831-QT333 tri-color photo sensor. The color management controller is a CMOS mixed-signal optical feedback controller IC, while the color sensor is a monolithic CMOS IC solution.

In the ICM offering, the controller interfaces directly to the photo sensor, processes the color and brightness information and adjusts the light output from the LEDs until the desired color is achieved. "By employing our optical feedback system, the light output produced by the LED array maintains its color over the time and temperature," explained Lee.

Although primary designed to control RGB LED backlighting for LCD flat-panel TVs, the ICM system may also be used to adjust the color and brightness of mood lighting in homes and businesses, infotainment and instrument panels, and other types of displays. Cheng added that their ICM system can be applicable to solid state lighting and automotive interior lighting.

The HDJD-JB01 ICM system is already available and is priced at less than $35 in low volume quantities. Both the HDJD-J822-SCR00 color controller and HDJD-S831-QT333 color sensor are individually available through the company's direct sales channel and worldwide distribution partners.

- Margarette Teodosio
Electronic Engineering Times-Asia

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