Products, Materials & Tools | Dec 03, 2009

Intematix Applies Phosphor and LED Module Expertise to Launch Next-Generation of Retail Signage

Intematix Corp., a leading innovator in phosphors, LED components and solid state lighting modules today announced the introduction of its proprietary, patent pending, custom signage product and service offerings.

By combining the advantages of LED-based lighting systems with the company's phosphor expertise, Intematix has been able to create a next-generation retail signage solution that delivers the low maintenance and energy savings of LEDs while improving on the visual qualities of high resolution film approaches.

The Intematix "phosphor-paint" retail signage solution implements a carefully designed, 50,000 hour backlight grid of royal-blue LEDs that excite the sign's photoluminescent display surface. In contrast to conventional backlit signage, in which the display surface filters white light to generate a desired color, the phosphor-paint actually generates the desired colors of light over the entire display surface. The result is high-visibility and visual quality in the sign's unlit daytime state, and vivid, "eye-popping" color, similar to neon signage, when lit. Using industry-compatible screen-printing techniques on a transparent or translucent plastic, or glass substrate, the phosphor-paint approach offers a full-color palette while delivering energy savings of 50-70% over conventional backlit signage.

According to Intematix' Chief Technical Officer and co-founder, Dr. Yi-Qun Li, "Remote phosphor solutions have previously been applied to individual LEDs and in LED light fixtures. Intematix has created an innovative solution by marrying the elements – phosphor, blue LED excitation, LED light extraction and printing technology – and scaling the solution up to the level of retail signage, all while making sure it would deliver on the long life promise. Just as LED-based white lighting will eventually replace both the incandescent and fluorescent lighting in our offices and homes, the Intematix phosphor-paint backlit signage technology is set to become the standard for reliable high-quality color rendition and energy saving." Intematix emphasized that it had strong pending patents for the innovation, covering all aspects of the technology for phosphor-based signage based on LED backlighting.

Backlighting for high visibility retail signage has consistently suffered from key trade-offs. Extended-life fluorescent solutions have decent efficiency, but suffer from reduced color rendering and sometimes-inconsistent light transmission for differing colors. Richer film colors require more intense backlighting, which increases energy consumption and introduces heat-related issues. Maintenance is a continuing issue for incumbent solutions, with retailers often having to replace lamps well ahead of their expected lifetimes in order to avoid premature lamp failures that might impact retail traffic and brand recognition. The long life, high efficiency and rich color rendering of the LED-driven phosphor-paint design eliminates all of these challenges.

Product Director Sandy Chew elaborated on several of the solution's additional benefits, "The Intematix phosphor-paint signage solution implements a universal light-box that allows rapid customization and production cycles. Unlike existing fluorescent paint solutions, the signs themselves are unaffected by sunlight/UV and, will continue to deliver bright, vivid colors over their extended lifetime. In addition, the ultra-low power consumption of the royal-blue LEDs enables higher quality portable solar- or battery-powered signage. As far as future format options, the approach also allows uniform dispersion of the phosphor within a sheet of transparent material, such as a thin flexible film or rigid sheet of polycarbonate or acrylic, which can then be cut to a desired shape or used in channel lettering."

With its expertise in phosphor, LED components and solid state lighting, Intematix is able to provide a full range of products for the signage marketplace, from backlights, LED modules, phosphor-impregnated sheets, and phosphor-paint to custom total signage solutions. The Intematix phosphor-paint approach has raised interest with a number of high-visibility US and Asian retail and restaurant chains.

About Intematix Corporation:
Intematix Corporation provides advanced materials, device solutions and services for worldwide manufacturers of high-performing electronic systems and devices. Intematix' first product—a suite of market-leading patented phosphors—was developed and commercialized in record time using the company's proprietary combinatorial discovery techniques. The phosphor technology, which is used to boost the quality and efficiency of high-brightness LEDs, has leveraged the company into higher levels of product integration, including LED lamp and modular lighting solutions, and custom signage applications. Headquartered in Fremont, California, Intematix maintains R&D, manufacturing, business and support operations in the U.S. and Asia. To learn more about Intematix, please visit the company at

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