MRS Bulletin

Technical Feature

Technical Feature

Organic Light-Emitting Devices for Solid-State Lighting

Franky So, Junji Kido and Paul Burrows


Organic light-emitting devices (OLEDs) have been widely developed for flat-panel displays, but only recently the efficiency of white OLEDs has risen to the point where they can be considered for solid-state lighting (SSL) applications. In this review, we discuss the requirements of solid-state lighting as they relate to OLEDs. We focus on how the color, efficiency, and cost requirements of general illumination differ from those of displays and how these differences might have an impact on the design of organic SSL. We then present some recent developments in large-area fabrication techniques that might be appropriate for solid-state lighting applications. Finally, we review recent results in the development of organic materials, device architectures, light extraction schemes, and fabrication techniques that can lead to cost-effective OLED lighting.

Franky So can be reached at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-6400, USA; tel. 352-846-3790, and e-mail

So is an associate professor in the materials science and engineering department at the University of Florida. He received his PhD degree in electrical engineering from the University of Southern California in 1991. So was the manager of the organic light-emitting device (OLED) research group at Motorola and then the head of materials and devices research at OSRAM Opto-Semiconductors. He helped Motorola launch the world's first OLED cell phone in 1999. While at Motorola, So received the Master Innovator award. In 2005, he joined the University of Florida. His research areas are OLEDs and photo-voltaics. He also is an associate editor of the IEEE Journal of Display Technology. So holds more than 50 issued patents and is a senior member of IEEE.

Junji Kido can be reached at the Department of Organic Device Engineering, Yamagata University, 4-3-16 Jonan, Yonezawa, Yamagata 992-8510, Japan; tel. +81-238-26-3052, fax +81-238-26-3412, and e-mail

Kido is a full professor in the Department of Organic Device Engineering at Yamagata University. He received his PhD degree in polymer chemistry from Polytechnic University, New York, in 1989. Since 2003, Kido also has been the general director at the Research Institute for Organic Electronics founded by the Yamagata prefectural government. His research activities focus on organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs). He invented white OLEDs in 1993 and is working on development of high-performance OLEDs. Kido's work has been recognized through awards from the Society of Polymer Science, Japan, and the Society for Information Display, USA, in 2002.

Paul Burrows can be reached via email at Burrows is a Science and Technology Consultant based in Washington state. From 2000 to 2008, he was a Laboratory Fellow at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, WA, operated for the U.S. Department of Energy by Battelle Memorial Inc. There, Burrows managed a broad research initiative in nanoscience and nanotechnology, applied thin-film encapsulation techniques to organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), and built a research program in novel materials for organic solid-state lighting. Prior to joining the national laboratory, he was a research scholar at Princeton University where he was part of the research team that developed multiple technology platforms around stacked, transparent, phosphorescent, and flexible OLEDs. Burrows has also held research appointments at the University of Southern California and the Riken Institute in Saitama, Japan. He graduated with a PhD degree in physics from Queen Mary College, University of London, in 1989; has co-authored over 110 publications; and is named as a co-inventor on 78 U.S. patents.