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ScreenTek is proud to provide you this glossary of common terms in the laptop LCD screen industry, and in the laptop notebook industry. Feel free to become more familiar with the terms we use throughout our site. If you notice any glaring omissions, we'd be glad to hear about those. Drop us a line at sales@screentekinc.com.

A, B, C Terms » 45 definitions

(Methoxybenzylidene)-4-butylaniline (MBBA)

an organic compound often used in liquid crystals.

a-Si (Amorphous silicon)

is the non-crystalline allotropic form of silicon. It can be deposited in thin films at low temperatures onto a variety of substrates, which offers some unique capabilities in a variety of electronics.

a-Si integrated row drivers

includes at least one shift register integrated in an LCD panel. The LCD uses a reset signal by shifting phase of gate drive pulse in a gate line direction according to a clock period. The LCD has a 1-bit shift register having a dummy function formed at a final terminal of the shift register. An input signal of drive pulse is used as the reset signal of a shift register formed at a final terminal of a shift register row.

a-Si Photodiodes

it allows for deposition of high integrity conformal layers thereover are produced by etching the amorphous silicon in a mostly anisotropic etchant in a reactive ion etcher in which the pressure of the etchant is controlled.

a-Si TFT

includes a gate electrode, a drain electrode and a source electrode, and an impurity layer for reducing an off current of the transistor

Active area

The actual area of an LCD screen that displays the image. The frame, or bezel, surrounding the LCD screen is not included in the measurement of active area.

Active matrix

An electronics display system in flat panel displays, in which each pixel is separately controlled by a matrix of thin-film transistors (see TFT). The device stores each pixel's state electronically while other pixels are refreshed, creating a brighter, sharper image than can be made with a passive matrix system.

Acuity human eye

the relative ability of the visual organ to resolve detail that is usually expressed as the reciprocal of the minimum angular separation in minutes of two lines just resolvable as separate and that forms in the average human eye an angle of one minute compare minimum separable minimum visible

Advanced super view

also called axially symmetric vertical alignment was developed by Sharp. It is a VA mode where liquid crystal molecules orient perpendicular to the substrates in the off state. The bottom sub-pixel has continuously covered electrodes, while the upper one has a smaller area electrode in the center of the subpixel.

Airknife drying

An industrial air knife is a pressurized air plenum containing a series of holes or continuous slots through which pressurized air exits in a laminar flow pattern. Air knives remove liquids, control the thickness of liquids, dry the liquid coatings, remove foreign particles, cool product surfaces or create a hold down force to assist in the mechanical bonding of materials to the surface. Electrical currents from anti-static bars can also be injected into the exit air knife stream to neutralize the static electricity charge on some surfaces.

Amorphous silicon

(a-Si or ?-Si) is the non-crystalline allotropic form of silicon. It can be deposited in thin films at low temperatures onto a variety of substrates, offering some unique capabilities for a variety of electronics.


The strength of a current of electricity expressed and measured in amperes.

An RGBW matrix

(from Red, Green, Blue, White) is a CFA that includes "white" or transparent filter elements that allow the photodiode to respond to all colors of light; that is, some cells are "panchromatic", and more of the light is detected, rather than absorbed, compared to the Bayer matrix

Analog RGB

a component that uses no compression and impose no real limit on color depth or resolution, but require large bandwidth to carry the signal and contain much redundant data since each channel typically includes the same black and white image. Most modern computers offer this signal via the VGA port. Many televisions, especially in Europe, utilize RGB via the SCART connector. All arcade games, excepting early vector and black and white games, use RGB monitors.

Anchoring Strength

Film thickness dependences of the unified surface anchoring strengths from the splay deformation for nematic cells were discussed. Thin nematic parallel (d = 2–50 ?m) and wedge (d = 0.3–5 ?m) cells with the same solid surface were prepared to evaluate the surface anchoring strength.

Angle of incidence

The angle at which a ray of light strikes the surface of an object. A ray of light located directly in front of a surface has an angle of incidence of 0 degrees. In addition, the angle of incidence always equals the angle of reflection.

Angle of reflection

The angle at which a ray of light is reflected from the surface of an object. A ray of light reflected directly back to the light emitting source has an angle of reflection of 0 degrees. In addition, the angle of incidence always equals the angle of reflection.


A technology used by LCD panels to reduce the reflection of external ambient light. Antiglare properties of this technology are produced by roughening the surface polarizer of the LCD panel. Doing so causes ambient light to be reflected from the LCD panel at different angles, minimizing the direct reflection of light. This roughening can be done mechanically, chemically, or by deposition, but chemical / deposition are most the most common (for LCD panels). In the chemical process, the glass or plastic overlay (polarizer) for the display is etched with a solvent--buffered hydrofluoric acid (HCl) for glass, or an organic solvent for plastic. This removes material in such a manner as to leave a roughened surface that is microscopically uniform. Deposition processes involve spray or dip coating the overlay with a solution; drying leaves a roughened layer behind. This often involves using a nano-particle suspension of SiO2, leaving behind a random distribution of particles when dried.

Anti-Reflection (AR)

A thin-film coating that reduces the reflection of light from a surface via the use of refractive-index matching and destructive interference techniques.


A technology used by LCD panels to reduce the reflection of external ambient light. Displays incorporating anti-reflective technology use a coating or film that has a chemical composition with a lower refractive index closer to that of the surrounding medium (air). This process called index matching attempts to match the refractive indices of two mediums: air and the surface of the LCD screen. The closer the refractive indices of these two mediums, the less light will reflect when transitioning from one medium to another.

Aspect ratio

The relationship of width and height. When an image is displayed on different screens, the aspect ratio must be kept the same to avoid "stretching" in either the vertical or horizontal direction. For most current monitors, this ratio is 4:3. For HDTV, the ratio is generally 16:9.


The main light emitting power source of a typical LCD panel. The backlight is typically a long narrow cold cathode fluorescent light located behind (the "back" in backlight) the glass and various polarizing filters of an LCD panel.


Birefringence is also known as double refraction. When two rays of light are split through anisotropic material like calcite or quartz, and are refracted in two different directions

Black Matrix (BM)

A patterned layer in an LCD’s color filter assembly whose purpose is to prevent light leakage and improve contrast.

Black Polymer Resin

Conductivity and dielectric constant of a three-component 0-3 composite of epoxy resin–barium titanate–carbon black (0-3 composites are systems in which the filler is in the form of 0-dimensional (point-like, disperse) particles in a three-dimensional polymeric matrix1) have been investigated both at DC and the frequency range of 20–106c/s.

Blocking Layer

Organic light-emitting devices (OLEDs) with the hole-blocking layer NaF between the ?-naphthylphenyliphenyl diamine and ITO were fabricated using a vacuum evaporation method. Compared to the different thickness of the hole-blocking layer, the OLEDs with the 1.0 nm thickness layer showed the maximum efficiency.

Brightness enhanced film (BEF)

A film placed on the rear side of an LCD panel which improves the brightness of an LCD panel by transmitting the light from the backlight unit more effectively.

Cavity Backlight

A front reflector (610) in a hollow cavity backlight (600) has asymmetrically reflective properties due to a film of alternating polymer layers recycling the light. The backlight addresses the need for thinner, lighter, large-area devices with fewer components but defined output polarisation and adequate viewing angles.

CFL cable length

The length of the cable which supplies power the CFL

CFL Voltage

The amount of volts that a particular CFL contains.

Chip on Glass (COG)

An LCD driver chip is mounted directly on the surface of the display glass, resulting in a thinner and lighter LCD.

Clock signal

A signal used to coordinate the actions of two ore more circuits

Cold cathode fluorescent lamp (CCFL) tube

CCFL backlightA small tube that provides a bright white light for an LCD display (see backlight). Inside the tube there is a low-pressure mercury vapor, which when ionized emits ultraviolet light. The inside of a fluorescent light is coated with phosphor, which can receive energy in a particular form and emit that energy in a visible form.

Color chromaticity (CIE)

The aspect of color that includes consideration of its dominant wavelength and purity.

Color saturation

Refers to the intensity of a color or is a measurement of its purity.

Color temperature

A simplified way to characterize the spectral properties of a light source. Lower color temperature indicated warmer light (red/yellow), while high color temperature indicated a colder (blue) light.

Column Data Driver

The PCF8578 is a low power CMOS1 LCD row and column driver, designed to drive dot matrix graphic displays at multiplex rates of 1:8, 1:16, 1:24 or 1:32. The device has 40 outputs, of which 24 are programmable and configurable for the following ratios of rows/columns: 32¤8, 24¤16, 16¤24 or 8¤32.

Column Inversion

The invention relates to a display with dot inversion or column inversion, particularly to a display with dot inversion or column inversion capable of saving power by using an equivalent shunt resistor and an inverter to balance the positive and negative charge or reduce the difference between the positive and negative charge, thereby power consumption in the switch.

Column Spacers

A composition for forming column spacers is provided. The composition comprises a radical polymerization inhibitor. The use of the composition enables simultaneous formation of a saturated pattern and a semi-transmissive pattern as column spacer patterns having different shapes, whose difference in thickness is controllable as desired although the sensitivity is slightly reduced, through a slit or semi-transmissive mask by varying the kind and amount of the radical polymerization inhibitor. Further provided are column spacers formed using composition and a liquid crystal display using the column spacers.

Common Plane Switching

An in-plane switching made active matrix liquid crystal display unit comprising:a first substrate including a plurality of scan lines, a plurality of common lines provided in parallel with the scan lines, a plurality of data lines provided such as to cross the scan lines, arid active elements near the cross portions of the data lines and the scan lines;a second substrate provided in parallel with the first substrate;a liquid crystal layer held between the first and second substrates; anda plurality of transparent comb-teeth electrodes provided on the first substrate for applying electric fields to the liquid crystal layer,wherein liquid crystal gaps above the transparent comb-teeth electrodes are larger than liquid crystal gaps between the transparent comb-teeth electrodes.

Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL)

A type of fluorescent lamp which plugs into a small light fixture, in contrast to incandescent light bulbs, have a longer life.

Compensation Films

To compensate for the change in birefringence due to the director pattern close to the substrate, a film is created that mirrors the director pattern of the activated TN-cell. This mirror image will change the birefringence in the opposite way the director does; therefore the phase difference of the light coming out of the cell-film combination will be the same as the phase difference of the light going into the cell-film combination. In principle, the ideal compensation film would have the exact director configuration of the TN-cell in the activated state. This can be achieved by two types of compensation layers a passive (no voltage) liquid crystal cell with a director that mirrors the activated state of the TN-cell or a polymer sheet. The disadvantage to the passive LC layer is the extra weight and thickness added to the display. Such a passive LC would also be more difficult to manufacture than the polymer compensation film. The disadvantage to the polymer films is that it is difficult to manufacture one that closely mirrors the TN director.


The measurement of the difference in light intensity between the brightest white pixel and the darkest black pixel.

Contrast Contour Plots

The contract contour plot is a superior representation of the data from stimulus experiments.

Cycle time

The amount of time it takes to complete a specific cycle.


Glossary index