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OLED displays in the lab

Researchers in our top-rated Physics department are world-leading experts in their field.

In a surprising discovery, our scientists have found that certain molecules long considered poor emitters are actually ideal for boosting efficiency and stability in next-generation blue OLED displays.

The study published in the journal Nature Photonics, reveal an overlooked molecular ‘blind spot’ that could enable major advances in energy-saving display technologies.

Outshining expectations

Organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), used in most smartphones and TVs today, rely on specialised organic molecules to emit light.

However, obtaining efficient and stable blue OLED emission has remained a difficult challenge for researchers.

Now, the research team has revealed that molecules previously dismissed as subpar light emitters can be used to triple the efficiency of blue OLEDs.

A molecule called ACRSA was found to increase device efficiency from 10% to over 28% when used as a sensitiser in ‘hyperfluorescent’ OLEDs, where energy is transferred from the sensitiser to a separate terminal emitter molecule.

An illuminating discovery

Even more remarkably, using the greenish sensitiser ACRSA, blue emission can be achieved by transferring ACRSA’s energy to a blue terminal emitter.

This green-to-blue approach reduces exciton energy compared to direct blue emitters, enabling more stable, longer-lasting blue OLEDs.

The team's strategy provides a new blueprint for designing stable and highly efficient hyperfluorescent OLED displays.

This new understanding opens up exciting possibilities for both fundamental research and practical applications.

Find out more

Our Department of Physics is a thriving centre for research and education. Ranked 2nd in the UK by The Guardian University Guide 2023 and in the World Top 100 in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2023, we are proud to deliver a teaching and learning experience for students which closely aligns with the research-intensive values and practices of the University.

Feeling inspired? Visit our Physics webpages to learn more about our postgraduate and undergraduate programmes.

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