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Chinese partnership for Cambridge display start-up


Porotech will be providing Jade Bird Display with porous GaN technology

University of Cambridge spin-out Porotech has announced its first partnership – with Jade Bird Display (JBD) in China, a micro-LED display company. Porotech will be providing Shanghai-based JBD with its porous GaN technology.

Porotech says its display technology breakthrough heralds a new era of brighter, sharper, more vivid microdisplays for even the smallest devices. Micro-LED is the next major leap forward for displays on products such as smartphones, smartwatches and VR/AR headsets. It is particularly useful in outdoor settings, where sunlight can often make existing displays difficult to see clearly.

But the performance of current micro-LED technologies deteriorates as the device size decreases. Porotech has created a new class of porous GaN semiconductor material that it says offers performance improvements that are suitable for mass production and can be customised for individual customers’ needs.

Last year, Porotech launched the world's first commercial native red InGaN LED epiwafer for micro-LED applications. JBD now plans to use Porotech's porous GaN templates to manufacture InGaN-based red micro-LED displays for use in applications such as VR/AR headsets, AR smart sports goggles and head-up displays.

"This partnership will enable both JBD and Porotech to meet the demands of micro-LED displays in the future," said Porotech CEO and co-founder Tongtong Zhu. "Micro-LED displays using GaN-based material technology are widely seen as the only technology that can deliver displays bright and efficient enough to meet the requirements of VR and AR. Our proprietary technology is robust but also flexible enough to be tailored to the needs of different applications."

JBD founder and CEO Qiming Li said: "As a leader in micro-LED display technology, JBD can see the enormous potential of Porotech's breakthrough – and we are keen to work with this revolutionary technology to create a new generation of microdisplays."

Earlier this year, Porotech raised £3m to fund the next stage of development of its unique micro-LED production technique. The funding round was led by Speedinvest, with participation from previous investors IQ Capital, Cambridge Enterprise, Martlet and Cambridge Angels.

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