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OLED microdisplays to be used as fingerprint scanners

OLED microdisplays to be used as fingerprint scanners

By BizLED Bureau

May 10, 2017: A new type of OLED microdisplay has been developed that can read even the smallest sweat pores on our fingers.

Fraunhofer Institute, Germany, a provider for research and development in the field of OLED-on-Silicon applications, has developed this high-resolution fingerprint-senso.

Fraunhofer developed the first prototypes that have resolutions of 1600 dpi, which the institute claims to be three times more than what is needed by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

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The technology involves OLED microdisplays as a light source placed on top of a microchip. This microchip can be designed with further sensor elements, e.g. photodiodes. The light source illuminates the finger and the chip analyses the reflected light.

An extra-thin encapsulation has been used for the chip of this fingerprint sensor. As a result, the distance between finger and image sensor has been reduced drastically, and the fingerprint can be captured perfectly. As a result, another imaging optics is not necessary for the application, said Bernd Richter, deputy division manager for OLED microdisplays and sensors at Fraunhofer FEP.

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The new OLED microdisplays can read beyond the lines on the finger, to the sweat pores. This can be done with the help of higher spatial resolution, which makes them all the more revolutionary.

Fraunhofer FEP has developed various application-specific OLED microdisplays based on OLED-on-silicon technology.

The new microdisplay can be integrated into interactive data eyeglasses as a bi-directional microdisplay, thus the content can be controlled by eye-movements.

One of the most important applications of this new sensor is the user verification in mobile devices. The Samsung Galaxy S8 is one of the first smartphones to use a scanner, but it has placed at the back of the device.

While Fraunhofer’s technology is at the prototype stage, it will take some time to be commercially available.

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