Polymer "muscles" provide full visible color gamut to displays

Forget SED, we're already on to bigger and badder ways to provide our eyeballs with those sweet sweet photons. What's new and hip this week is a polymer pixel technology developed by researchers at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. They've built a grid of 10 pixels, each 80 micrometers across -- hardly a challenger to a 70-inch LCD, but its what's under the hood that has us salivating. Each pixel is built of a polymer "muscle" that flexes when a current is applied. Light is reflected through a "diffraction grating," making only one wavelength of light visible at a time from each pixel, but allowing for use of the full color spectrum -- something not possible with the current method of mixing RGB LCD pixels. It sounds like actual displays from the tech are a long way off -- researchers are currently working on ways to limit the pixels to visible parts of the light spectrum, and power consumption will need some work as well -- but our hopes are high for a display size war within the next 10 years or so.

[Via Slashdot]