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How the IoT Makes a Difference in People’s Health

8 Jun 2018

The Internet of Things (IoT) is fast becoming a common staple among manufacturers of software-infused devices. From fitness bands to home security systems to pacemakers, IoT is the driver in which every aspect of our daily lives is connected to the Cloud, constantly being updated, and enabling us to multitask more efficiently. These days, the IoT is largely taken for granted and almost expected to be implemented into new products that accommodate our particular lifestyle. However, one area where the IoT has a significant impact on an individual’s Quality of Life is in the medical device industry.

IoT for medical devices

As IoT applications connect your watch to your phone to show alerts, measurements and data, so can this technology enable a person to monitor their health, whether critical or benign information. This connectivity is quickly becoming a vital feature, one in which patient/doctor health monitoring can be performed remotely and in real time, allowing for more accurate diagnostics and emergency alerts, should the need arise. This is extremely beneficial to patients with chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes, cardiac problems and even dementia.

Though connected medical devices are still in their infancy, what we have seen is truly remarkable. For example, one company enables patients with heart monitors to download an app that reads their bpm (beats per minute) in real time, and then quickly sends a distress signal to their personal physician if they feel an episode coming on. This allows the physician to remotely watch the cardiograph in real time and diagnose the problem on the spot. Gone are the days of handwritten logs of daily occurrences and having to look through hundreds of hours of graphs trying to diagnose the issue.

The IoT and personal patient information grants the following:

  • Analysis of different patients to collectively understand behaviors and risks
  • Analysis of a patient’s health over time to identify early signs of concern
  • Send and receive secured data between physician and patient
  • Constant and real-time monitoring of patient diagnostics
  • Support for emergency notification

Operating room with monitor

Not only does the IoT work well on a personal patient level, but just as much within a hospital setting where nearly everything is run on computers and various digital medical devices. In the same way the commercial industry is using the IoT to create “smart” homes, it’s only a matter of time before hospitals will be transformed into “smart” facilities. Assuming security is maintained at all levels, the benefits realized for patients and the healthcare system will be abundant.

  • Initial medical device activation
  • Predictive and scheduled maintenance
  • Send and receive notifications from selected devices
  • Overall analytics

General Digital’s Software Services Group is providing various aspects of software and product development that will enable new IoT-connected medical devices to become FDA approved—and function exactly the way the designer intended. Having worked very closely with the DoD on various projects for many years, our expertise extends far beyond that of most other software service providers. Our top priorities are ensuring that programs for such medical products are HIPAA compliant, leaving no room for lost data and exposure. Also, with our expertise in the aerospace industry, our knowledge of safety-critical software is best in class.

The IoT has shown us much that is remarkable, but none more so than in the healthcare industry. It has already made a difference in the lives of so many individuals, addressing health issues faster than ever before. As the evolution of technology permeates our everyday life, so too will the way the medical world communicates.

Future Advancements in Display Technology Today

1 May 2018

Future display technology

Display technology is evolving at an exponential level. As the demand for digital visuals spikes, we must always keep the human-machine interface (HMI) at the forefront of design and engineering. This applies to military applications as much as it does to workstations, gaming, mobile, outdoor and so on. Sure, it’s great if displays become more sophisticated each year—so long as mission success is not compromised.

OLED Displays
OLED layersOLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) displays could replace LED backlit displays in the not-too-distant future. OLED performance is equal to or better than LED or LCD screens in high brightness output, high contrast ratio, wide color gamut, wide viewing angles and fast response times. Additionally, OLED displays do not require a backlight, which translates to extremely thin screens that are more energy efficient and simpler to build than LCD displays, not to mention the weight savings.

Flexible Displays
Flexible smartphone conceptAnother benefit to OLED technology is its inherent flexibility. Flexible displays are more than the latest fad. Made from malleable components (such as flexible glass, metal, or plastic) that allow it to be reshaped for a variety of configurations, bendable displays are virtually shatterproof. They may become the military’s number one choice, what with their slimness, light weight, increased durability and improved image quality. As the technology progresses and trickles down into the consumer market, it’s likely the costs will drop below that of current LCDs (time will tell if this pans out—we’re not soothsayers). Of course, curved TV screens—with their perfect picture from every viewing angle—are already available to you and me. Can you imagine an ultra-thin, bendable smartphone that folds up neatly to take up minimal room in your pants pocket or purse?

Tactile Touch Screens
Haptic touch screenTouch screen technology has been around for decades now—most notably in our very own VuePoint touch terminal, which debuted in 1977, and is still in production today in its third generation form. Multitouch touch screens have advanced the user experience greatly. And now, the latest innovation is haptic touch screens, which provide tactile feedback to the user as they scroll over items or click buttons. They do this by delivering different textures to the finger, or a low electrical current that stimulates the skin just enough to confirm a selection.

And More to Come
3D hologram the next big thingOn the horizon (if not already here) are 3-D screens that don’t require special glasses for the immersive 3-D experience, and holographic displays of the sort we first saw in Star Wars, when Princess Leia sent a “video” message via R2D2. The rapid-fire improvements in display technology ensure an exciting future for generations. Soon, Star Trek will no longer be considered science fiction, but simply the norm.

From Hand-to-Hand to Hacking: The New Battlefield Defense

25 Apr 2018

War is no longer confined to just bullets and bombs and hand-to-hand combat. Cyber warfare is now one of the largest and most complex battlefronts.

To combat this ever-constant threat, everyone—from you and your family to government and military organizations—must defend against any sort of computer attack. Firewalls and highly effective security software are just the start in maintaining control, and what most of us consider the “only” or “best” option available. However, the military, government and security experts are convinced we can do better.

Bringing cybersecurity down to the hardware level is the next line of defense, as well as one of the hardest to breach, assuring all confidential data are maintained and protected to the highest degree. Hardware-based security techniques vary—they can be built-in on the system level, board level, and even on the chips within the hardware.

SlimLine 1U Smart Card CAC ReaderAlthough General Digital doesn’t build security hardware, we offer options that can be integrated into our LCD monitors, which many in industrial and military sectors find beneficial. One option is the addition of a CAC (Common Access Card) reader, which reads Smart cards. This little piece of plastic, the size of a credit card, has encrypted coding on its magnetic strip that is read by the system and will provide access only if the coding matches what the system was programmed to read. Smart cards are extremely difficult to replicate and provide access for the cardholder to secure facilities, documents, data storage and the like. Another option, which one day will replace Smart cards, is biometrics authentication, which is a more advanced form of identification, as it relates to a variety of human characteristics.

Saber LCD monitor Privacy ScreenWe also offer privacy screens for our monitors, allowing visibility to only the user positioned directly in front of the unit and creating a “block-out” view to anyone standing outside the narrow viewing cone.

Also, our Software Services engineers, with their expert attention to detail, goes above and beyond when working with the military, providing the highest level of security in many forms.

As new technology emerges, we are able to incorporate it into our monitors and keyboards, how ever it best serves our customers.

We invite you to consult a Sales Engineer today for your cybersecurity needs.

Rugged Monitors for Ruggedized Workstations

24 Apr 2018

Submarines, Humvees, aircraft, ships, and even server rooms share a common theme: minimal space for personnel and equipment. And the computer workstations needed for the mission or task at hand are a vital component to achieving the day’s objectives. Not only must these systems and monitors be compact and easily accessed by highly active team members, but they also need to be ruggedized to withstand serious shock, vibration, and impacts, as well as meet MIL-STD-461 requirements for EMI.

JLTV on the move

Now more than ever, streamlined and lightweight—but rugged—workstations are a necessity for military and industrial servers. Whether you are running a small server in a mobile transit case or Pelican™ case, or a large server in a full-size stationary RETMA rack, we manufacture many types of fixed monitors and rack mount drawer-mounted  flip-up monitor-keyboards. With display sizes from 6.5″ to 65″, at a variety of resolutions, we can accommodate nearly any requirement. We have exactly what the military needs for those crucial moments where dependability is of the utmost importance.

Sailor at workstation

Another important factor for a military monitor destined for workstation duty is customization—you have a particular set of requirements your equipment must meet. With General Digital’s abundance of options and accessories, you’ll want for nothing. The short list includes:

If you can think of it, our engineers can make it a reality.

If your specs call for a rack mount, panel mount or standalone monitor, have a look at our super rugged Saber Series, our waterproof sealed Barracuda Series or our large format Titan Series. They can easily be paired with one of the many advanced desktop and rack mount keyboards we offer.

Slimline 1U 19 inch in transit case

Or perhaps you need a flip-up display rack drawer with integral keyboard and trackball, which our 1U high SlimLine 1U Series and 2U high SlimLine Lite II Series will cover nicely. For more display real estate, you’ll appreciate our flip-up dual display-keyboard rack drawer, the TwoView.

If you don’t need a keyboard, there’s the rugged single display SlimLine Micro Series and dual display TwoView Micro Series, both of which can be rack mounted, ceiling mounted, or even wall mounted.

For space-saving, military-grade LCD monitors that will serve in your workstations well into the next decade (and probably beyond, if past experience tells us anything), you will be best served by a General Digital monitor. Contact a Sales Engineer today for a no-obligation consultation.

These 3 Basic Attributes Aren’t So Special, But Every Military Monitor Requires Them

6 Apr 2018

Military-grade monitors must adhere to a strict set of requirements. It’s a no-brainer that they need to be rugged and durable to take the abuse they will inevitably endure, whether on the battlefield or the battleship. However, some factors matter more than others when a great many lives are on the line. Readability, portability and wide temperature range are three important features to look for in your next ruggedized display.

 

Marine AV-8B Harrier takes off just before sunset

Display readability is key for communication. You might think any display is easily readable, but just think of the difficulty you have trying to view your cell phone or tablet when the sun is shining directly on it. Imagine if you had that same problem in the field, unable to see critical information you need to assessed an evolving situation.

Our display engineers and Optical Bonding Laboratories business unit work together to create the best sunlight readable displays on the market. The easy-access OSD (On-screen Display) keypad allows for quick adjustment of the LED backlight brightness, thus ensuring that the display is readable, regardless of the ambient light.

The same sunlight readable LED rail can be configured to also enable the display to become compatible with night vision goggles (NVG). Additionally, we offer numerous antiglare films, privacy films, EMI protection and more as optional extras.

 

Humvee driving on dirt road

Portability is an extremely important asset for many military monitors. For mobile units, traveling from base to front lines and everywhere in-between, a monitor that is lightweight and rugged and reliable is invaluable. General Digital constructs our display enclosures primarily from aluminum, and reinforce with steel where necessary.

Whether mounted in a console or a transit case, shock and vibration is another factor that must be considered, as a constant battering by rogue waves or choppy Humvee rides can reduce internal electronics to a shambles in short order. A good military-grade monitor is rugged on the inside as well as the outside.

 

Coast Guard heavy icebreaker ship Polar Sea (WAGB 11)

All display systems create heat when operating, and have a limited internal temperature range at which they can function. If your monitor can’t handle the temperature extremes it will encounter, it suddenly transforms into an expensive paperweight.

Some advanced commercial-grade monitors have internal thermometers that alert the system to power down when reaching beyond their limited temperature extremes. That’s good, but military-grade LCD monitors need to continue operating at a far wider temperature range, whether in the desert under direct sunlight or aboard a Navy warship stationed in the arctic. Because of this, the monitor needs to be able to maintain an operating temperature range of at least 5°F to 130°F (-15°C to +55°C) and a storage temperature range from -67°F to 185°F (-55°C to +85°C) in accordance with military-issued standards.

 

There are, of course, other must-have attributes of military-grade monitors, but these are often overlooked when determining the requirements. To discuss your requirements for a rugged LCD monitor, we invite you to speak with a Sales Engineer. As always, there is no obligation on your part.

For the Best Quality, DIY ur PCBs

4 Feb 2018

Ruggedized displays, first-rate software development and testing, optical bonding for stellar display performance…all qualities of which General Digital is known the world over.

PCB close-up But there is one crucial element that ties all of these admirable qualities together and enables them to perform well. A simple, unassuming device that, unless you’re an engineer, you probably don’t think about often. We’re talking, of course, about printed circuit boards, otherwise known as PCBs. You know, the variably-sized green fiberglass boards that have all manner of copper pathways and scores of tiny electronic components soldered to them.

Many times, manufacturers will import their PCBs from foreign markets, whose quality control and attention to detail is often suspect. Of course, here at General Digital, we like to do things a bit differently—by making our own printed circuit board assemblies in-house. This ensures superior build quality and allows us to do production runs as big or as small as our needs require. Currently, we are producing a medium volume of PCBs, but are looking to further expand production.

PCB close-upAs of this writing, the product list for our in-house PCBs is quite extensive. There are LED driver boards, LED rails for display enhancements (which include sunlight readability and night vision goggle compatibility), calibration boards, control boards, digital equalizer boards, USB hubs and interface boards, to name a few. All are engineered and designed for use with our display products or sold as standalone devices to be integrated by the customer. And, because we do custom work, we encourage manual stenciling for the solder paste application to each board.

General Digital is certified and trained in following specific standards and procedures to make sure that the development of our printed circuit boards are more than just “up to code” products. We are certified in IPC 610: Inspection/Pick and Place Assembly; IPC J Standard: Hand Soldering (when necessary and applicable); and IPC 7711/21: Reworking.

PCB close-upAlthough, for a small (but growing) company, you might think that space would be critical and crucial. Yet, we are serious when it comes to organization and cleanliness with all of our products. We’ve managed to squeeze in some premium PCB production equipment, including an oven for solder reflow, a reflow machine for reworking in accordance to IPC 7711/21, and a wash machine to ensure that our PCB boards are spotless.

If you need high quality, customized PCBs, look no further than the experienced staff at General Digital Corporation. Providing performance at every level.

RestoMods—Not Just for Cars

12 Dec 2017

RestoMod: a term coined by car enthusiasts who admire the old classics, but appreciate modern amenities. This is usually accomplished by taking an older vehicle (a 1969 Mustang Fastback, for example) and “restoring” all of its innards with modern components. Sounds like a motor enthusiast’s dream, right?
1965 Ford Mustang RestoMod

 

VuePoint

The first Macintosh computer, circa 1984Now, what if, simply for the sake of nostalgia, someone fitted the original 1984 Macintosh computer with the latest 9-inch flat panel display, touch screen and 5 TB  hard drive? Some serious retro techy would definitely be adding that to their collection.

This is exactly what General Digital did with our VuePoint product line, though for the benefit of our customers rather than nostalgic longings. Forty years ago, we released VuePoint™, the world’s first gas plasma, flat panel, serial terminal with an integral touch screen. It evolved into VuePoint II™ in 1984, which had improved functionality in a much more compact, easy-to-build package. Then, in 2003, with much demand for an updated version, a third generation VuePoint III™ was developed and built, which is a drop-in replacement for VuePoint II.

Much of our VuePoint I and VuePoint II product line is still in service today in the printing, flight simulation and power plant industries, and is being utilized by a whole new generation of users.

Three generations of Vuepoint touch terminals

Forty-four years ago, General Digital began life as an engineering company. In our earliest stages, we built or programmed whatever people needed. By 1977, after much tinkering and experimentation, we released the VuePoint, a monochrome gas plasma flat panel display with a serial circuit board and Z80 processor that could hold a whopping 8k of RAM. Though that seems minuscule by modern memory standards, at the time it was incredible. The unit could even be upgraded to 16k for an additional $250! That might seem expensive for such little memory, but remember, this is 1977.

The original VuePoint could receive and store different serial commands on “pages.” Utilizing an infrared-style touch screen, users could change parameters on those pages and send serial commands back to the system. It became very popular for nuclear aircraft carriers, nuclear power plants, fossil fuel power plants, newspaper printing presses, sheet metal fabrication facilities and many other industries.

In 1984, the second generation VuePoint II was created. It featured the same size display, a newer processor, more RAM, and a much simpler and more efficient construction process. It enjoyed a long production run of nearly 20 years.

In 2003, the VuePoint III was produced as a direct-fit replacement, and consisted of modern components. Now using an active matrix LCD display rather than gas plasma, the monochrome orange characters were recreated using the new color display to appear as though it were a gas plasma display. The unit mounts the same, looks the same, and operates the same as previous VuePoint generations, but with modern interior components.

This makes VuePoint General Digital’s longest running product line. The philosophy of “restomodding” a display system has carried through to many of our products. Adding new, modern inner components while leaving the exterior, mounting, connectors and more identical to the original.

 

 SlimLine

Original SlimLine flip-up display with keyboard and touch pad - circa 1992In 1992, long before anyone realized the benefits of such a design, we introduced the SlimLine™, a 2U high (3.50″), flip-up LCD monitor with an integral keyboard and pointing device, capable of passing military shock and vibration requirements.

Though many “copycat” devices soon followed and are widely available today, General Digital goes to great lengths to produce ruggedized products built to last for years, while offering maximum flexibility.

As a matter of fact, many first-generation SlimLine units are still in use by the U.S. Navy.

 

Impact

Impact Monitor Kit 12 - front and rear viewsWe have a customer who has been buying the exact same monitor kit from us since 1996. The manufacturer of the original components is no longer manufacturing them and, 21 years later, the life cycle has reached its end. Our customer is now faced with a dilemma—engage our services to either reverse engineer their circuit board, or design a contemporary product with identical form, fit and function. Most other companies would simply shut them down, forcing them to buy the latest and greatest in their product line-up, which would result in having to completely re-engineer their facilities software and componentry.

However, at General Digital, we do our best to work in our customer’s best interests, even if some modification is required. There’s often an associated engineering fee, and the engineering can take a little time, but we have you covered, as we’re the most familiar with the components and how they function. This makes General Digital recognized and respected worldwide, with a loyal customer base who depend on our high quality construction, configuration control, and engineering capability.

 

Engineered for the Long Haul

As General Digital’s president once stated, “There’s no such thing as a small change in the world of engineering.”

We are well aware of customer constraints, particularly in regards to time, space and budget. We always do our best to meet or exceed their expectations while maintaining high quality products and services, and consistent configuration control. Though not always an easy feat, we make sure that our customer gets exactly what they ordered.

If price is your priority, you’ll fall short. If speed is your priority, you’ll fall short. If a good fit is your priority, you’ll fall short. But if top quality components and construction are your priority, even if the form, fit or price aren’t ideal, in the long run, you’ll realize a far greater savings of time, money, and downtime.

General Digital is there with you for the long haul

The 5 Most Popular Touch Screen Technologies Available Today

14 Nov 2017

Using the touch screen on a digital tabletThough touch screen technology first appeared in the mid-1960’s, it would take about two decades before being integrated into consumer devices. And another decade before appearing on mobile phones and PDAs (Personal Digital Assistants). Today, touch screens have become ubiquitous: they’re used on all manner of devices we encounter in our everyday lives: ATMs, vending machines, gaming devices, GPSs, directories, and, of course, computer displays.

With this ever-growing surge of touch technology, it’s rather easy to miss the many uses and variations in touch screens and how each configuration actually works. Because touch technology has been in use for so long, it should come as no surprise that some of the variations have been deemed “obsolete” or are only used for very specific display applications. We present here a listing of some of the most common touch technologies to summarize their features, benefits and limitations.

 

Surface Capacitive

Being an all-glass design, light transmission of surface capacitive touch screens is high, especially when compared to resistive touch screens. This improves display clarity and reduces eye fatigue. Its scratch-resistant top coat lends itself to durability in environments where frequent use is expected. This type of touch screen is ideally suited for rugged industrial and military applications.

 Surface capacitive touch screen

Surface capacitive touch screen

 

Projected Capacitive

Designed for “full multitouch” capabilities, this touch screen technology goes beyond the traditional zoom, pinch, expand and rotate functionality. It offers an interactive tool of 20 resolvable touches at less than 6 millisecond point speed. This kind of responsiveness overcomes latency issues associated with software filtering factors and/or a slow touch response rate. The anti-stiction glass surface enhances simple and advanced gestures, even with nitrile, latex or vinyl gloves. With over 3300 touch sensing points, optimal precision and accuracy are simply “business as usual.”

Projected capacitive touch screen

 

Resistive

Through continual improvement, the technology that goes into resistive touch screens has been well established for many years, making it the “tried-and-true” option and an economic choice. This technology features a glass panel with a uniform resistive coating, and a thick polyester conductive (on one side) cover sheet separated by small, transparent insulating dots. When the screen is pressed with a finger or stylus, the conductive coating on the polyester makes electrical contact with the coating on the glass, thus registering a touch. Resistive touch screens are extremely resilient to wear and tear, making them a good choice for high-traffic applications.

Resistive touch screen

 

Infrared Touch

Infrared touch technology doesn’t rely on an overlay or a substrate to register a touch, so it cannot physically “wear out,” thus ensuring a long product life cycle. Possessing superior optical performance and excellent gasket-sealing properties, an infrared touch screen is ideal for harsh industrial environments and outdoor kiosks. They work with a finger, gloved hand, stylus, and almost any object wider than 1/10″. They adjust to changing light conditions, even direct sunlight. In addition, they benefit from stable, no-drift calibration performance.

Infrared touch screen

 

Surface Acoustic Wave  (SAW)

Featuring pure glass construction, Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) touch screens will almost never physically “wear out” due to a superior scratch-resistant coating. Excellent light transmission ensures that the image clarity of the display remains sharp and vibrant. The stable, “drift-free” operation means that the touch response is always accurate. These touch screens work well with a finger, gloved hand or a soft stylus. And SAW touch screens have a sensitive touch response—they recognize the touch location and the amount of pressure applied.

Surface Acoustic Wave touch screen

Surface Acoustic Wave touch screen

 

Touch Screen Types Compared

Touch screens compared

 

To determine which type of touch screen will best suit your needs, we invite you to contact a Sales Engineer at 800.952.2535 for a no-obligation consultation.

9 Common But Often Misunderstood LCD-Related Terms

1 Sep 2017

In the world of flat panel monitor systems, many technical terms are used daily that are considered “normal” to anyone in the industry. These terms get used so freely and frequently that we forget lay people may not be fully familiar with their meaning. At least in the context in which we’re using them. We hope our readers find this list helpful.

Bits
Color pixel grid
Color depth, also known as bit depth, is either:

  • the number of bits used to indicate the color of a single pixel in a bitmapped image or video frame buffer, or
  • the number of bits used for each color component of a single pixel.

Contrast Ratio
High contrast ratio vs. low contrast ratioThe contrast ratio is a property of an LCD, and is defined as the ratio of the luminance of the brightest color (white) to that of the darkest color (black) that the system is capable of producing. A high contrast ratio is a desired aspect of any display as it displays a richer image. Contrast ratio shares similarities with dynamic range.

EMI Filter
EMI filterAn EMI filter (electromagnetic interference filter) is a passive electronic device used to suppress conducted interference that is present on a signal or power line. It can also be used to suppress radiated interference emanating from an enclosure.

Film Lamination
Applying film lamination to displayLaminating film is the technique of manufacturing a material in multiple layers, so that the composite material achieves improved strength, stability, appearance or other properties from the use of differing materials. A laminate is a permanently assembled object by heat, pressure, welding, or adhesives. Film lamination is commonly used to improve or alter the performance of an LCD.

NTSC Color Gamut
Display color gamut analysisColor gamut is the full range of color that a display can reproduce, and is commonly expressed as a percentage of NTSC. Although NTSC (National Television System Committee) was developed to provide television standards for North America, in the context of color gamut, 100% of NTSC refers to the full range of color that can theoretically be displayed. A display that can combine both high luminance and a high percentage color gamut should provide the best image reproduction capability.

NVG/NVIS
Night Vision GogglesWhen Night Vision Goggles (NVG) are in use, a standard LCD monitor appears washed out (blooms), rendering it unreadable. A display that is NVIS (Night Vision Imaging System) compatible renders a readable screen while wearing night vision goggles.

OSD
On-screen displayAn on-screen display (OSD) is a control panel on a monitor or television screen that allows the user to select viewing options and/or adjust properties of the display, such as brightness, contrast, and horizontal and vertical positioning.

Pixel Pitch
Pixel pitchDot pitch (sometimes called line pitch, stripe pitch, or phosphor pitch) is a specification for an LCD, computer printer, image scanner, or other pixel-based device that describes the distance from the center of a pixel (or sub-pixel cluster) to the center of the next pixel, typically measured in millimeters.

VESA MOUNT
Monitor VESA mounting holesThe Flat Display Mounting Interface (FDMI), also known as VESA Mounting Interface Standard (MIS), is colloquially known as VESA mount. It is a family of standards defined by the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) for the mounting of flat panel monitors, televisions, and other displays to stands, articulating arms or wall mounts. Commonly available mounting patterns include 75 mm, 100 mm, 200 mm, 400 mm, 600 mm in a square or rectangular arrangement.

Three Tips To Avoid Damaging Your Optically Bonded Displays Right Now

13 Jul 2017

Display delaminationWe can not stress enough how important it is to take all of the necessary precautions when installing an optically-bonded flat panel display. Neglecting to take proper precautions can result in panel failures, including permanent damage to the LCD, pressure spots, delamination, cracking of the overlay and other components related to the build, and more.

Though it may seem to be a simple task, there are many installation mishaps that can lead to permanent damage of the LCD. This includes cracking of the overlay, delamination/fissure of the bond, hot/pressure spots or other damage to the internal display assembly. Therefore, optically-bonded screens must be handled in a dust-free environment, with open gloved hands and by the outside edges of the display frame only. This will ensure that pressure exceeding the limitations will not be applied directly to the bonded screen.

General Digital recommends the following techniques when integrating optically-bonded displays, as they help ensure the longevity of the bond:

Sequential or Random Installment of Necessary Hardware (e.g., “Star Pattern”)

Star pattern for tightening screwsThis provides an even pressure and avoids any rocking of the screen which may cause torsional stress. Using co-planar surfaces when securing bonded products is imperative. DO NOT continue integration if the unit is rocking.

Torque Specifics

Use a torque screwdriver set to the OEM specsBe sure to torque the mounting hardware to the manufacturer’s specifications. Over-torquing may produce exaggerated pressure along the edges, thus leading to the formation of hot/pressure spots in the LCD.

XO-Fraim™

Typically, an OEM frame provides an inadequate number of mounting points for achieving a tight seal for optical bonding. We strongly recommend the use of our specially-designed XO-Fraim, which increases the number of mounting points to the OEM enclosure, thus ensuring a liquid or EMI tight seal to the gasket.

Additionally, side mounting brackets with slotted holes allow the display to be properly adjusted once mounted to the bezel. In the event that hot/pressure spots are introduced, the slotted holes in the XO-Fraim allow adjustment of the bonded LCD assembly, which equalizes the pressure on all four edges and minimizes pressure.

Ultimately, it is the responsibility of the procurement party to develop procedures to handle, mount and pack the panels properly and to ensure that the procedures are followed to the letter.