New Naked-eye 3D Display Does Not Compromise Resolution

May 16, 2012
Mami Akasaka, Tech-On!
A 3D image with six viewpoints (photo courtesy of NLT Technologies)
A 3D image with six viewpoints (photo courtesy of NLT Technologies)
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A 3D image of a sofa (six viewpoints), 3D image of a soccer ball (two viewpoints) and 2D characters being displayed at the same time (photo courtesy of NLT Technologies)
A 3D image of a sofa (six viewpoints), 3D image of a soccer ball (two viewpoints) and 2D characters being displayed at the same time (photo courtesy of NLT Technologies)
[ If it clicks, the expanded picture will open ]
The concept of the multi-viewpoint display (photo courtesy of NLT Technologies)
The concept of the multi-viewpoint display (photo courtesy of NLT Technologies)
[ If it clicks, the expanded picture will open ]

NLT Technologies Ltd prototyped a naked-eye low-temperature polycrystalline silicon (Si) TFT LCD display that has six viewpoints.

The screen size of the display is 3.1 inches (diagonal length: 79mm), and its pixel count is 427 x 240. Based on the "HDDP (horizontally double-density pixels)" pixel alignment technology, which NEC LCD Technologies Ltd (current NLT Technologies) developed, NLT Technologies applied the "HxDP" (horizontally x times-density pixels), a new technology that realizes multiple viewpoints.

For traditional LCD displays, three (red, green and blue) sub-pixels arranged in a stripe pattern constitute one pixel. To display a 3D image on such a display, it is necessary to use at least two pixels for displaying one pixel of the 3D image, reducing resolution by half or more.

For the HDDP, two horizontally-arranged sets of red green and blue (RGB) sub-pixels constitute one pixel. So, the density of horizontally-arranged pixels is twice as high as that of vertically-arranged pixels. As a result, it becomes possible to display a 3D image having the same resolution as that of a 2D image.

While the HDDP displays a 3D image with two viewpoints, the HxDP displays a 3D image with two or more viewpoints by using as many sub-pixel sets as the number of viewpoints for each pixel. In other words, the density of sub-pixels triples for three viewpoints and increases six times for six viewpoints.

The HxDP can not only display a 3D image having the same resolution as that of a 2D image like the HDDP but also display 2D and 3D images at the same time on the same screen. In addition, it is possible to choose the number of viewpoints for a 3D image and display a 3D image with the given number of viewpoints anywhere on the screen. Also, the viewable angle of the screen widens as the number of viewpoints increases from two.

Furthermore, for its LCD display module supporting the HxDP, NLT Technologies used kinematic parallax because data to be viewed is different depending on the angle from which a 3D image is viewed. As a result, the stereoscopic effect of 3D images was increased, the company said.

NLT Technologies will exhibit the prototyped display at SID Display Week 2012, which will take place from June 5 to 7, 2012, in Boston, Mass, the US. The company plans to have sales negotiations with clients by showing the display at the show, aiming to commercialize it in or after 2013. The company expects that the display will be employed for high-end industrial instruments.