SpatiaLight Says Less LCOS Testing Will Speed Workflow

SpatiaLight, a maker of ultra high-resolution liquid crystal on silicon (LCOS) microdisplays for the HD market, said this week it plans to move to a new "sample testing" process for its six million pixel 1080p imager sets and drop its 100 percent test scheme for certain product characteristics. Abbreviating its testing protocol, the firm said, will enable far larger quantities of product to be shipped faster to its major clients (notably LG Electronics).

According to SpatiaLight, previous testing had been performed in order to "validate high customer expectations in a consistent and reliable manner." But although it says its new testing procedures will in no way undermine product reliability, the firm will be able to dramatically ramp up by September to issuing several thousand imager sets per month (from the current maximum of about 1,000 monthly).

The Novato, Calif.-based company said what makes the new testing scheme possible is the compilation of a "sufficient volume of data" that allows it to confidently move to a form of sample (or random) testing, and thus, eliminate a major production bottleneck. (The time required to do 100 percent testing has taken an average of almost 7 man-hours per imager set shipped, the firm said.)

According to SpatiaLight, LGE recently told the company of its intent to move into the North American market with LCOS HD models by Q4 2006, or as soon as SpatiaLight could demonstrate "adequate quality and delivery consistency" (which has now been achieved, SpatiaLight said).