TOPAS 2012 consortium targets innovative OLED lighting

Jan. 12, 2010
BASF, Osram Opto Semiconductors, Philips and Aixtron are project partners in an OLED project funded by the German government.
BASF, Osram Opto Semiconductors, Philips and Aixtron have received a commitment for funding of the new joint “TOPAS 2012,” the second phase of the OLED 2015 initiative of Germany's Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

TOPAS stands for “Thousand-lumen Organic Phosphorescent devices for Applications in lighting systems.” In this project, the consortium partners will focus on developing innovative material and component architectures, as well as new production machines for lighting solutions with highly efficient OLEDs. In doing so, the partners can build on successful joint developments from the previous project “OPAL 2008,” which was also sponsored by the BMBF.

Research within the TOPAS 2012 project will focus on the development of OLEDs for the lighting systems of the future. This will require all primary colors, in particular highly efficient and stable blue emitters, which are not currently available on the market. Blue emitters ensure that it is possible to achieve all color temperatures from cool- to warm-white using OLED lighting. Vapor-deposited materials are currently considered to be state-of-the-art and provide long lifetimes and high luminous flux and efficiency.

Within the project group Osram Opto Semiconductors is focusing on a transparent OLED solution with an area of 1 square meter. Philips is concentrating on developing particularly bright monolithic OLED systems with 1000 Lumen, and Aixtron is working on production equipment with high-grade deposition concepts based on its OVPD (organic vapor-phase deposition). “BASF’s materials have already demonstrated their potential in very efficient diodes with lifetimes of several thousand hours and extremely high quantum yields,” explained Elmar Keßenich, project manager at BASF Future Business GmbH. This is already a major step toward the next goal of achieving lifetimes of more than 10,000 hours, which is approximately 10-times longer than the life of a traditional light bulb.

In addition to high efficiency and a long lifetime, a high CRI (color rendering index, >80) is also crucial to ensuring excellent light quality. CRI values in excess of 90 can be achieved with BASF’s portfolio of emitters. In the area of materials, BASF works with partners from the University of Bayreuth, the Technical Universities of Dresden and Braunschweig, and the University of Munich. The development of emitters is essential to progress in OLED technology.

“The endorsement of our work and the funding of the TOPAS 2012 project by the BMBF strengthen our outstanding position in OLED research – also with regard to international competition,” said Karsten Heuser, project coordinator and head of OLED activities at Osram Opto Semiconductors.

“Because lighting accounts for around 20 percent of global energy consumption, the development of energy-saving lighting solutions plays a particularly important role in reducing CO2 emissions and thus combating global warming,” explained Dietrich Bertram, head of OLED activities at Philips.