Luxell display lights up radar warning receiver

Engineers at GEC-Marconi Avionics Defense Systems Division in Fareham, England, wanted a rugged sunlight-readable display for their Sky Guardian 2000 radar-warning receiver. They found their match with the ETL3 sunshine legible black layer thin-film electroluminescent (TFEL) display from Luxell Technologies Inc. in Mississauga, Ontario.

Apr 1st, 1998
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Engineers at GEC-Marconi Avionics Defense Systems Division in Fareham, England, wanted a rugged sunlight-readable display for their Sky Guardian 2000 radar-warning receiver. They found their match with the ETL3 sunshine legible black layer thin-film electroluminescent (TFEL) display from Luxell Technologies Inc. in Mississauga, Ontario.

One engineer at GEC Marconi Avionics cites "superior contrast," "sunlight legibility," and "state-of-the-art" technology for the decision to choose Luxell displays for the radar warning receiver, which alerts aircraft pilots to the presence of hostile fire-control radar.

In addition to sunlight readability, military display buyers of the future will demand "wider viewing angles and ruggedization," says Fred Prins, Luxell`s director of sales. "Eventually the thin-film displays will replace the liquid crystal displays because of their limited temperature ranges."

TFEL technology has several advantages over LCDs, Prins explains. "Liquid devices have a tendency to crack under extreme cold, which is why it needs heaters, but a thin-film display is more rugged and can operate on less power." he says.

Using Luxell`s patented optical interference black layer structure, the ETL3 display emits an amber-colored image, centered at 585 nanometers, with a typical contrast ratio of 50 to 1 and viewing angle of 160 degrees off any axis. With resolutions of 64 addressable lines per inch, each of the pixels is individually addressable for graphics and text formats.

What is special about the Luxell display is its contrast and ability to eliminate reflected glare. "The black layer basically acts as a filter, taking the sunlight, and folding it back on itself 180 degrees out of phase, then canceling it out," Prins explains.

While a display without the Luxell black layer may reflect as much as 90 percent of ambient light, a display with the black layer reflects less than 14 percent of ambient light. The black layer is at the display`s counter electrode - the device that turns the pixels on and off.

The ETL3 offers high resolution and high ambient-light readability from total darkness to full sunshine. These displays are designed to function in demanding situations with an mean time between failure of as long as 20,000 hours.

The ETL3 series displays, which are rugged and have low solar heating, are row and column matrix designed to replace bulky cathode ray tubes in applications such as avionics, test equipment, special vehicles, and medical instruments, Prins says.

The display requires +5/+12VDC power and four basic CMOS-level signals to operate video data, video clock, horizontal sync, and vertical sync.

Also using the ETL3 were designers at Lockheed Martin for the data entry panel on the U.S. Navy P-3C aircraft, Prins says. - J.M.

Fore more information on the ETL3 or Luxell Technologies contact Fred Prins by phone at 905-206-1708, by fax at 905-206-9174, or by mail at Luxell Technologies Inc., 5170A Timberlea Blvd., Mississauga, Ontario, Canada L4W 2S5.

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A display without the Luxell black layer display technology may reflect as much as 90 percent of ambient light, while a display with the Luxell technology reflects less than 14 percent of ambient light.

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