Better Photoresist Developed in South Korea

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The Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) has developed a photoresist to reduce Korea's reliance on Japanese products.

The Electronics and TelecommuThe Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) has developed a photoresist to reduce Korea's reliance on Japanese products.nications Research Institute (ETRI) announced on Nov. 9 that it has developed a photoresist that is capable of reaching a pixel size of 3 micrometers or smaller even at a process temperature of 100 degrees Celsius or less and succeeded in applying it to an OLED microdisplay.

An OLED display is produced by photoresist-based pixel formation at a thin film. South Korea’s reliance on photoresist imported from Japan was 100 percent until recently and is 50 percent now.

The prototype OLED microdisplay made by the institute has a size of 0.7 inch and is suitable for wearable devices. The size of each pixel is 3 micrometers or smaller, and an ultra-high-resolution panel can be made with 2,300 pixels per inch. The photoresist developed by the institute can be processed at a low temperature unlike existing ones and thus is suitable for OLED manufacturing.

The institute initiated the photoresist development project in 2019. SKC hi-tech&marketing, Dongjin Semichem and the institute developed pigments as key materials and came up with the photoresist by conducting mixing tests with the pigments. The institute explained that the photoresist is superior to those of Japanese companies in terms of low-temperature endurance and coloring uniformity.

The photoresist is being supplied to one domestic smartphone manufacturer and its smartphone with an OLED panel using the photoresist is already available in the market. The economic effect of the photoresist is estimated at more than 60 billion won this year alone.


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