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Flexible Patterning of Complex Micro Structures using Adaptive Embossing Technology (FlexPAET)
Start date: 01 Oct 2008, End date: 30 Sep 2011 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Compared to conventional light sources, the light producing capacity of a light emitting diode (LED) is virtually unlimited at about a 1/10 of the energy consumption rate and a fraction of the production cost. Due to its point source characteristics an LED requires a means to collimate and shed the emitted light onto larger areas. Diffractive optics (DO) elements consisting of highly complex micro structured surfaces provide a solution to this problem, allowing the controlled collimation and distribution of point source light. However, there are significant challenges associated with the production of DO-elements making them expensive and limit size as well as achievable illumination performance. In order to exhaust the vast potential of LED illumination, an economic solution of the production of high performance DO-elements is required. Therefore, in the proposed project a new technology will be developed, providing a high throughput, highly flexible process for the patterning of large area complex micro structures, thus allowing the low cost, high volume production of large area micro structured surfaces for the use in diffractive optics elements. The proposed work will result in a novel technology for high volume production of DO-patterned surfaces, answering to an ever increasing demand for advanced light management and illumination solutions. More importantly even, this technology will bridge the gap between conventional micro manufacturing technologies and industrial scale, cost effective production of a new generation of innovative, high value added products. The proposed project will contribute directly to the creation of new capabilities at the European level, enabling the transfer of laboratory scale manufacturing processes to an industrial scale production of high quality, large area DO-elements for use in a variety of advance lighting solutions, thus strengthening Europe against Asian competition in the lucrative high end consumer products market.
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