Corning Launches Ultra-Slim Flexible Glass

6/4/2012 5:11 AM 

Corning, NY; June 4, 2012. Corning Incorporated has announced the launch of Corning Willow Glass, an ultra-slim flexible glass that could revolutionize the shape and form of next-generation consumer electronic technologies. The company made the announcement today at the Society for Information Display’s Display Week in Boston.

Corning Willow Glass is designed to enable thin, light, and cost-efficient applications, including current slim displays and the smart surfaces of the future. The thinness, strength, and flexibility of the glass have the potential to enable displays to be “wrapped” around a device or structure. As well, Corning Willow Glass can be processed at temperatures up to 500° C. High temperature processing capability is essential for current high-end displays, and is a processing condition that cannot be supported with polymer films. Corning Willow Glass will enable the industry to pursue high-temperature, continuous “roll-to-roll” processes – similar to how newsprint is produced – that have been impossible until now.

It will support thinner backplanes and color filters for both organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) and liquid-crystal displays (LCDs) in high-performance, portable devices such as smartphones, tablets, and notebook computers. This new, ultra-slim flexible glass will also help develop conformable (curved) displays for immersive viewing or mounting on non-flat surfaces.

Corning Willow Glass is produced using the company’s proprietary fusion process. Advances in fusion forming have made it possible to produce glass that is 100 microns thick – about the thickness of a sheet of copy paper. Even at that thickness, it provides hermetic sealing to sensitive components, while also providing excellent optical, thermal, and surface properties.

Corning is currently shipping samples of its Willow Glass to customers developing new display and touch applications. The company is also collaborating with research institutions, customers, and equipment makers to develop an ecosystem of compatible process equipment, including optimized process design.