WO2005029456A1 - Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels - Google Patents

Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2005029456A1
WO2005029456A1 PCT/CA2004/001742 CA2004001742W WO2005029456A1 WO 2005029456 A1 WO2005029456 A1 WO 2005029456A1 CA 2004001742 W CA2004001742 W CA 2004001742W WO 2005029456 A1 WO2005029456 A1 WO 2005029456A1
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WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
feedback
terminal
transistor
drive
connected
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/CA2004/001742
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Arokia Nathan
Yuriy Vygranenko
Shahin Jafarabadiashtiani
Peyman Servati
Original Assignee
Ignis Innovation Inc.
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to CA2,443,206 priority Critical
Priority to CA002443206A priority patent/CA2443206A1/en
Priority to CA2,472,689 priority
Priority to CA002472689A priority patent/CA2472689A1/en
Priority claimed from US10/554,754 external-priority patent/US7978187B2/en
Application filed by Ignis Innovation Inc. filed Critical Ignis Innovation Inc.
Priority claimed from CA002519100A external-priority patent/CA2519100C/en
Publication of WO2005029456A1 publication Critical patent/WO2005029456A1/en

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    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G3/00Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes
    • G09G3/20Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters
    • G09G3/22Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources
    • G09G3/30Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels
    • G09G3/32Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED]
    • G09G3/3208Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED]
    • G09G3/3225Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED] using an active matrix
    • G09G3/3233Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED] using an active matrix with pixel circuitry controlling the current through the light-emitting element
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G3/00Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes
    • G09G3/20Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters
    • G09G3/22Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources
    • G09G3/30Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels
    • G09G3/32Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED]
    • G09G3/3208Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED]
    • G09G3/3225Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED] using an active matrix
    • G09G3/3233Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED] using an active matrix with pixel circuitry controlling the current through the light-emitting element
    • G09G3/3241Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED] using an active matrix with pixel circuitry controlling the current through the light-emitting element the current through the light-emitting element being set using a data current provided by the data driver, e.g. by using a two-transistor current mirror
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G3/00Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes
    • G09G3/20Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters
    • G09G3/22Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources
    • G09G3/30Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels
    • G09G3/32Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED]
    • G09G3/3208Control arrangements or circuits, of interest only in connection with visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes for presentation of an assembly of a number of characters, e.g. a page, by composing the assembly by combination of individual elements arranged in a matrix no fixed position being assigned to or needed to be assigned to the individual characters or partial characters using controlled light sources using electroluminescent panels semiconductive, e.g. using light-emitting diodes [LED] organic, e.g. using organic light-emitting diodes [OLED]
    • G09G3/3275Details of drivers for data electrodes
    • G09G3/3291Details of drivers for data electrodes in which the data driver supplies a variable data voltage for setting the current through, or the voltage across, the light-emitting elements
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G2300/00Aspects of the constitution of display devices
    • G09G2300/08Active matrix structure, i.e. with use of active elements, inclusive of non-linear two terminal elements, in the pixels together with light emitting or modulating elements
    • G09G2300/0809Several active elements per pixel in active matrix panels
    • G09G2300/0842Several active elements per pixel in active matrix panels forming a memory circuit, e.g. a dynamic memory with one capacitor
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G2300/00Aspects of the constitution of display devices
    • G09G2300/08Active matrix structure, i.e. with use of active elements, inclusive of non-linear two terminal elements, in the pixels together with light emitting or modulating elements
    • G09G2300/088Active matrix structure, i.e. with use of active elements, inclusive of non-linear two terminal elements, in the pixels together with light emitting or modulating elements using a non-linear two-terminal element
    • G09G2300/0885Pixel comprising a non-linear two-terminal element alone in series with each display pixel element
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G2320/00Control of display operating conditions
    • G09G2320/02Improving the quality of display appearance
    • G09G2320/029Improving the quality of display appearance by monitoring one or more pixels in the display panel, e.g. by monitoring a fixed reference pixel
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G2320/00Control of display operating conditions
    • G09G2320/02Improving the quality of display appearance
    • G09G2320/029Improving the quality of display appearance by monitoring one or more pixels in the display panel, e.g. by monitoring a fixed reference pixel
    • G09G2320/0295Improving the quality of display appearance by monitoring one or more pixels in the display panel, e.g. by monitoring a fixed reference pixel by monitoring each display pixel
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G2320/00Control of display operating conditions
    • G09G2320/04Maintaining the quality of display appearance
    • G09G2320/043Preventing or counteracting the effects of ageing
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G2360/00Aspects of the architecture of display systems
    • G09G2360/14Detecting light within display terminals, e.g. using a single or a plurality of photosensors
    • G09G2360/145Detecting light within display terminals, e.g. using a single or a plurality of photosensors the light originating from the display screen
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09GARRANGEMENTS OR CIRCUITS FOR CONTROL OF INDICATING DEVICES USING STATIC MEANS TO PRESENT VARIABLE INFORMATION
    • G09G2360/00Aspects of the architecture of display systems
    • G09G2360/14Detecting light within display terminals, e.g. using a single or a plurality of photosensors
    • G09G2360/145Detecting light within display terminals, e.g. using a single or a plurality of photosensors the light originating from the display screen
    • G09G2360/147Detecting light within display terminals, e.g. using a single or a plurality of photosensors the light originating from the display screen the originated light output being determined for each pixel
    • G09G2360/148Detecting light within display terminals, e.g. using a single or a plurality of photosensors the light originating from the display screen the originated light output being determined for each pixel the light being detected by light detection means within each pixel

Abstract

A technique for driving a column of pixels that include light emitting elements is presented. The technique incorporates feedback data provided from feedback data sources connected to the data line and to feedback line of the array, pixel driving circuit with feedback path. The technique can also include block of the reference elements for input signal corrections.

Description

Circuit And Method For Driving An Array Of Light Emitting Pixels

FIELD OF INVENTION

[0001] The present invention generally relates to a light emitting device display techniques, and more particularly, to a technique for driving light emitting elements that uses a feedback architecture during programming to compensate for instability and non-uniformity of the pixels .

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] Recently active-matrix organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays have become more attractive due to advantages over conventional liquid crystal flat displays. These advantages include the ability to fabricate OLED displays at a relatively low cost and high efficiency. Further the displays do not require backlighting and provide a wide viewing angle.

[0003] An active-matrix organic light-emitting diode (AMOLED) display compromises an array of rows and columns of pixels, each having an OLED and some active devices such as thin film transistors. Since OLEDs are current driven devices the pixel circuit of an AMOLED should be capable of providing an accurate and constant drive current to achieve a consistent and uniform luminance.

[0004] As disclosed in U.S. Patent. NO. 5,748,160, a simple pixel circuit comprises two thin film transistors (TFTs) and an OLED. hi this circuit, the OLED is connected to the drain terminal of a driving TFT and a gate terminal of the driving TFT is connected to a column line through a switching TFT. A storage capacitor comiected between the gate terminal of the driving TFT and ground is used to maintain the voltage at the gate terminal of the driving TFT when the pixel circuit is disconnected from column line. For this circuit the current through OLED strongly depends on the characteristic parameters of the driving TFT. Since the characteristic parameters of a

TFT, particularly, the threshold voltage under bias stress, vary by time, and such changes may differ from pixel to pixel, the induced image distortion may be unacceptably high.

[0005] Oαe of the methods that has been employed to make the current driving circuit less sensitive to the shift in the threshold voltage is programming the pixel with current instead of voltage, i this method, the OLED current is less dependent on the voltage-current characteristics of driving transistors. Implementations of current programmed pixel circuits for OLEDs have been disclosed e.g. Yi HE et al., "Current Source a-Si:H Thin-Film Transistor Circuit for Active Matrix Organic Light-Emitting Displays", IEEE Electro Device Letters, Vol. 21, No. 12, p590-592, December 2000).

A drawback of the current programming method is that it is slow, particularly for low programming current levels, due to the large line capacitance. As a result, voltage programming methods are desirable considering their speed. This is particularly true for large area TVs and displays.

[0006] Another method to make the drive current less sensitive to transistor parameters is to use current feedback. United States patent application 20020101172A1 provides a driving system with current feedback. An external current comparator compares the pixel current with a reference current and generates an appropriate signal to control the pixel current. One drawback of the disclosed method is that the control signal is a current, which can limit the programming speed. Another drawback of the method is that the anode and cathode electrode of each OLED have to be patterned, which creates reliability concerns in the currently used OLED fabrication process.

[0007] Luminance feedback is another method that has been used to stabilize OLED luminance. As described in U.S. patent application 20030151569 feedback readout circuits responsive to the feedback signal representing the light output of the OLED can be used to provide brightness control. A drawback of the disclosed method is that every pixel requires a photo-sensor that is optically coupled to the OLED. This results in integration issues. Another drawback is that the low level of the feedback signal generated by a photo-sensor may lead to the poor signal-noise ratio, thereby narrowing the dynamic range of the system.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0008] The present invention provides several driving circuits having a feedback control-system architecture that can be used for driving a column of the light emitting devices and are suitable for use in AMOLED displays. In the present invention, a feedback voltage is generated by an on-pixel feedback circuit or element. This voltage is used to adjust the programming voltage of the pixel.

[0009] According to an aspect of the invention each pixel in the column is connected to the feedback-type control unit via signal line and feedback lines, and receives a scanning clock signal via select line connection terminal. The programming voltage applied to the pixel through the signal line sets the driving current through the light emitting element. The programming voltage can be accurately adjusted by an external control unit through the use of feedback voltage generated by the on-pixel feedback circuit. The feedback voltage is proportional to the driving current of the light emitting element and is used to set the programming voltage so as to achieve the desired driving current despite presence of any instability (shift in characteristics of transistors and light emitting element) and non-uniformity across pixels

[0010] The column control unit may be connected to the block of reference elements formed on the display substrate in order to correct an error in the output current level caused by inaccuracy of the pixel components or temperature drift. The block of reference elements may also include a photo-sensor optically coupled to the light emitting element in order to provide a luminance feedback compensation for brightness variations induced by instability of organic material or temperature changes.

[0011] According to another aspect of the invention a pixel circuit for use in a display is provided. The display comprising a plurality of pixels with each pixel having a select line, a signal line, a feedback line. The pixel circuit comprising a light emitting element, a drive part for providing a drive current to the light emittmg element, the drive part having a storage capacitor and a switch use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the select line, and a first terminal connected to the signal line, and a second terminal, and an on-pixel feedback element for generating a feedback voltage representing a drive current provided to the light emitting element, the feedback signal being provided to the feedback line.

[0012] According to another aspect of the invention a pixel circuit for use in a display is provided. The display comprising a plurality of pixels with each pixel having a first select line, a second select line, a signal line, a feedback line. The pixel circuit comprising a light emitting element, a drive part for providing a drive current to the light emitting element, the drive part comprising a storage capacitor, a switch use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the first select line, a first terminal connected to the signal line and a second terminal, a drive use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the second terminal of the switch use transistor, a first terminal and a second terminal connected to the light emitting element, and an on-pixel feedback circuit for generating a feedback voltage representing a drive current provided to the light emitting element. The feedback circuit comprising a resistor connected between the second terminal of said drive use transistor and a potential, and a feedback transistor having a gate connected to the second select line, a first terminal connected to the first terminal of the drive use transistor and a second terminal connected to the feedback line.

[0013] According to another aspect of the invention a pixel circuit for use in a display is provided. The display comprising a plurality of pixels with each pixel having a select line, a signal line, a feedback line. The pixel circuit comprising a light emitting element, a drive part for providing a drive current to the light emitting element, the drive part comprising, a storage capacitor, a switch use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the select line, a first terminal connected to the signal line and a second terminal, a drive use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the second terminal of the switch use transistor, a first terminal and a second terminal connected to the light emitting element, and an on-pixel feedback circuit for generating a feedback voltage representing a drive current provided to the light emitting element. The feedback circuit comprising a resistor connected between the second terminal of said drive use transistor and a potential, and a feedback transistor having a gate connected to the select line, a first terminal connected to the first terminal of the drive use transistor and a second terminal connected to the feedback line.

[0014] According to another aspect of the invention a display device is provided. The display device comprising a select line, signal line to which a voltage signal in accordance with both brightness and feedback information is supplied, a feedback line to which a feedback voltage signal in accordance with current level of drive current is supplied, a plurality of pixels forming an array of pixels, each pixel of the plurality formed on a substrate at an intersecting portion of said scanning line and said signal and feedback lines, each pixel comprising a light emittmg element, a current driving circuit having a storage capacitor and a switch use transistor, and a feedback circuit to provide feedback signals representing a current output of said current driving circuit, a display column control circuit for receiving input signals, adjusting the input signals using a reference circuit formed on the substrate at each column, and modifying the input signals in response to the feedback signals from pixels in the column to produce a desired brightness level of said light emitting element in a selected pixel, and a selecting line drive circuit for successively activating selecting lines.

[0015] According to another aspect of the invention a method of driving a plurality of light emitting elements arranged in a column at a desired brightness is provided. The method comprising the steps of selecting one pixel of a plurality of pixels in the column, establishing the desired brightness of a reference light emitting element by adjusting a reference current flowing through the light emitting element in response to a photocurrent from a photo-sensor that is optically coupled with the reference light emitting element, converting the reference current into a corresponding voltage level, transmitting the voltage level to the selected pixel, converting the voltage level into a drive current and generating a feedback signal representing a drive current level, adjusting the voltage level in response to the feedback signal from the selected pixel to establish a drive current substantially equal to the reference current, storing the adjusted voltage level, and driving the light emitting element with the drive current in accordance with the adjusted voltage level to produce the desired brightness level in the pixel.

[0016] Advantages of the present invention include the ability to provide a stable current to the light emitting diode over time, thereby maintaining image quality.

Moreover, the combination of the external current feedback for pixel programming and luminance feedback for data signal preprocessing provides brightness control and compensation despite instability and non-uniformity in pixels. The circuits occupy a small area and are voltage programmed with voltage feedback. The use of voltage for programming and feedback improves the programming speed, which is necessary for large area displays and TVs. [0017] This summary of the invention does not necessarily describe all features of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0018] These and other features of the invention will become more apparent from the following description in which reference is made to the appended drawings wherein:

[0019] FIG. 1 is a block diagram of an example of the configuration of a display device with feedback control-system architecture according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0020] FIG. 2 is a block diagram of pixel architecture according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0021] FIG. 3 A is a circuit diagram of a pixel circuit and column control unit according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0022] FIG. 3B depicts the corresponding waveforms for the circuit of Fig. 3 A according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0023] FIG. 4 is a circuit diagram of a modification of the embodiment of FIG.' 3 A;

[0024] FIG. 5 is a schematic of a pixel circuit for a common cathode OLED configuration according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0025] FIG. 6A is a circuit diagram of a column control unit and a pixel circuit having p-channel type transistors according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0026] FIG. 6B depicts the corresponding waveforms for the circuit of Fig. 6 A according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0027] FIG. 7 is a circuit diagram of a column control unit and a pixel circuit with a p-channel type transistor switch according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0028] FIG. 8 is a circuit diagram of a column control unit and a pixel circuit having p-channel and n-channel type transistors according to an embodiment of the invention; [0029] Fig. 9 is a circuit diagram of a column control unit and a pixel circuit with a current mirror as current driving circuit according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0030] Fig. 10 is a circuit diagram of a modification of the embodiment of Fig. 9;

[0031] Fig. 11 is a circuit diagram of a modification of the embodiment of Fig. 3;

[0032] FIG. 12 is a circuit diagram of a pixel circuit, column control unit and a reference cell with implemented luminance feedback according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0033] FIG. 13 is a circuit diagram of a pixel circuit and column control unit with a reference diode according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0034] FIG. 14 is a circuit diagram of a pixel circuit, column control unit with a reference OLED according to an embodiment of the invention;

[0035] FIG. 15 is a circuit diagram of a modification of the embodiment of FIG. 14.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0036] The present invention encompasses a technique for driving of columns of pixels where each pixel comprises a light emitting element, in particular, an organic light emitting diode (OLED).

[0037] FIG.l presents a display device having a feedback control-system architecture 10 and an array of addressable pixels 11. The pixels 11 are controlled by a select line driver 12 and data driver 13. As shown in FIG. 1, a separate feedback control unit 14 is provided on each column line of the array. The feedback control unit 14 of a given column is connected to each pixel in the column via a signal line 15 and a feedback line 16. A block of reference elements 17, located on the display substrate, may also be provided. The block of the reference elements 17 includes some elements of the pixel circuit for input signal corrections and may also include a photo-sensor that is optically coupled to a light emitting element to implement a luminance feedback.

[0038] The structure of a given pixel 11, according to an embodiment of the invention is shown in FIG. 2. As shown in FIG. 2, the pixel has an OLED 21, a current driving circuit 22, controlled by the stored voltage level using a storage capacitor 23, a feedback circuit 24, and switches SI and S2. The switches SI and S2 can be any suitable switching device, but are preferably an insulating gate type field effect transistor. The pixel 11 operates in writing and hold modes. In the writing mode, when select line(s) are activated, the switches SI and S2 are turned on, and the current driving circuit 22 receives the signal voltage from control unit 14, while the on-pixel feedback circuit 24 feeds the voltage feedback signal. The driving current through the OLED 21 can thereby be accurately controlled through the use of negative feedback, hi the hold mode, the switches SI and S2 are turned off and the driving circuit 22 provides the driving current having a current level in accordance with the voltage level to the storage capacitor 23.

[0039] FIG. 3A shows a pixel drive circuit according to an alternative embodiment and a circuit diagram of the control unit 14. Controlling signals are shown in Fig. 3B.

[0040] The pixel drive circuit comprises three transistors 34, 36 and 38, a resistor 32, a storage capacitor Cs and an OLED 31. The pixel drive circuit is connected to a select line, a feedback line, and a signal line. A power supply node having a positive potential Vdd and common ground are also shown.

[0041] Transistors 34, 36 and 38 can be fabricated using amorphous silicon, poly silicon, appropriate organic semiconductors and NMOS or CMOS technologies. The on-pixel feedback circuit is consisted of a thin film resistor 32 that can be fabricated with any appropriate material and technology, which provides sufficient stability. For instance, in amorphous silicon technology the resistor 32 can be fabricated using N+ amorphous silicon or N+ microcrystalline silicon.

[0042] The drain terminal of driving transistor 36 is connected to the cathode of OLED 31. The source terminal of transistor 36 is connected to resistor 32 and the gate terminal is connected to the signal line through transistor 34. Resistor 32 is connected between the source terminal of transistor 36 and the common ground.

[0043] Transistors 34 and 38 are driving switch and feedback switch transistors, respectively. The gate terminals of transistors 34 and 38 are connected to the select line. The source terminal of transistor 34 is connected to the signal line and the drain terminal is connected to the gate terminal of transistor 36. The source terminal of transistor 38 is connected to the feedback line and the drain terminal is connected to resistor 32. All OLEDs of the different pixels have a common anode electrode, connected to the voltage supply node (Vdd). Storage capacitor Cs is connected between the gate terminal of transistor 36 and common ground. It can be connected between gate and source terminals of transistor 36. For the latter, capacitor Cs can be implemented by the gate-source capacitance of transistor 36.

[0044] The external controlling unit 33 in its simplest form is a high-gain, low offset difference amplifier with a negative feedback connection.

[0045] During the writing mode, the select signal goes high, turning on transistors 34 and 38. As a result, the driving transistor 36, along with the external difference amplifier 33 and resistor 32 make a circuit with negative feedback. The difference in the voltage level between an input signal voltage and a voltage drop across the resistor 32 is amplified by the difference amplifier 33, adjusting the potential on the gate of transistor 36. After the initial transients the output current stabilizes and in the case of a high-gain feedback loop the current passing through the OLED 31 is:

Figure imgf000011_0001

During the hold mode, the select line goes low, so transistors 34 and 38 are turned off and the pixel is disconnected. Since the gate voltage of driving transistor 36 is stored in capacitor Cs, the drive current does not change during the hold mode.

[0046] In the configuration shown in FIG. 3 A, the current of the pixel 31 depends on the absolute resistance of resistor 32, which is not desirable due to possible inherent inaccuracy and poor thermal stability of integrated resistors. FIG. 4 presents an architecture, according to another embodiment of the invention that addresses this by implementing a reference resistor 42 and an external data current source 41. The reference resistor 42 is made with the same material as integrated resistors and formed on the display substrate. This enhances the temperature stability of the circuit. The programmed level of the drive current for this circuit is: Rr

IOLED = IinP- , (2) RJ

where Rr is the resistance of the reference resistor 42, and Rf is the resistance of the feedback resistor 32. The above equation indicates a considerable improvement in the accuracy of the programming current because of insensitivity of the resistance ratio to the temperature variations.

[0047] A current pixel drive circuit according to another embodiment of the invention and a section of the column driver circuitry are shown in FIG 5. The circuit is similar to the circuit of FIG. 3A however, in the circuit of FIG. 5, the cathode of OLED 51 is common and is connected to a negative power supply potential Vss. As a result, the cathode of the OLEDs is not patterned.

[0048] The anode of OLED 51 is connected to the source terminal of transistor 56. The feedback resistor 32 is connected between the drain terminal of transistor 56 and ground node. The voltage level of the select line during the writing mode should be high enough to guarantee that transistor 54 is in "on" state for the entire output current range. The feedback line in this configuration is connected to the non-inverting input of the difference amplifier 33 to provide a negative feedback.

[0049] Fig.'s 6A, 7 and 8 illustrate pixel drive circuit, according to other aspects of the invention wherein p-channel MOS transistors are used.

[0050] FIG. 6A shows a pixel circuit, according to another embodiment of the invention. The feedback switch use transistor 68 is p-channel transistor. The circuit is similar to the circuit of FIG. 5, however the implementation of the PMOS transistor requires an additional select line. FIG. 6B shows conesponding wavefonns for select line A and select line B. The advantage of this circuit over the circuit of FIG. 5 is the lower voltage swing for the select lines that is required.

[0051] FIG. 7 shows a pixel circuit according to another embodiment of the invention.

The transistors 76 and 74 are p-channel transistors and the transistor 78 is an n- channel transistor. As an embodiment of FIG. 7 this circuit also has two select lines marked as A and B having reduced voltage swing. [0052] In the pixel circuit shown in FIG. 8, all of the transistors are p-channel transistors. Here the anode of the OLED 51 is connected to the drain terminal of the transistor 76 and the common cathode electrode of the OLED 51 is connected to the negative power supply potential Vss.

[0053] FIG.'s. 9 and 10 show configurations of the pixel circuits according to alternative embodiments of the invention. In these pixel circuits, the current driving circuitry is based on a current mirror architecture, i.e. transistors 96 and 97 and 108 and 110. The current level of the signal cunent and the current level of the drive cunent are proportional. In the circuit of FIG. 9, all transistors are n-channel transistors and in the circuit of FIG. 10 all transistors are p-channel transistors.

[0054] In Fig. 10, the feedback resistor 32 is connected between the drain terminal of transistor 106 and common ground. The gate terminals of the transistors 106 and 110 are connected. In the circuit of FIG. 9, the cathode electrode of OLED 31 is connected to the drain terminal of transistor 97, the anode is common and the transistor 97 is the driving transistor and is connected to OLED 31. In the circuit of FIG. 10, the cathode of the OLED 51 is common and the anode is connected to the drain terminal of the transistor 110.

[0055] During writing mode, the transistors 104 and 108 are in an "on" state, thus the transistor 106 along with feedback resistor 32 and external control unit (the difference amplifier 33) form a feedback loop. The transistor 110 does not directly take part in the feedback loop, but since the transistors 110 and 106 have same gate-source voltage, the cunent of the transistor 110 is proportional to the cunent of the transistor 106. The ratio of cunent through transistors 110 to 106 is determined by the aspect ratios of these transistors. In these circuits, the feedback resistor 32 and the OLED 31 of FIG. 9 and 51 of FIG. 10, are not in the same cunent path thus a higher lifetime is expected.

[0056] Several methods have been used to reduce the charge injection and clock feed- through effects in integrated circuits. As the simplest approach, a dummy transistor that is driven by the inverse signal of the select line connected to the gate of driving transistor can reduce both charge injection and clock feed-through enors caused by the driving switch. The drain and source terminals of the dummy transistor are connected to the gate of the driving transistor. FIG. 11 shows an example of such modification for the embodiment of FIG. 3. The width of dummy transistor 118 is half of the width of driving transistor 116. It will be apparent to one skilled in the art that the width of the dummy transistor 118 can be any appropriate size.

[0057] FIG.12 is a schematic circuit diagram of another embodiment of a pixel circuit, column control unit and a reference cell according to the present invention. Here, the implemented luminance feedback improves the linearity of the video signal - light output characteristics, and also provides a compensation for brightness instability caused by instability of the organic material, ageing, temperature changes, or other environment stresses. The compensating circuit with luminance feedback includes a resistor Rl, a difference amplifier 121, and a NMOS transistor 122, which are parts of the control unit, and the elements of the reference cell 123 including an OLED 124, and photodiode 125. The photodiode 125 is optically coupled to the reference OLED 124 to form a feedback cunent signal in response to emitted light.

The circuit is balanced when the input cunent passing through the resistor Rl is equal to a feedback cunent generated by the photodiode 125. The cunent flowing through OLED 124 via transistor 122 and resistor 42 is an input signal for next stage of the device, which is the same as the embodiment of FIG.4.

[0058] Fig.13 is a schematic diagram of an alternative embodiment of the embodiment of Fig. 4. In this embodiment, diodes Dl and D2 are used in place of feedback resistor Rl and reference resistor R2 of FIG. 3, respectively. As circuit functionality with reasonably low enor in the programmed cunent level requires a good match between the reference diode and pixel diodes, the fabrication technology must be efficient for fabrication of the diode anay with reproducible forward current- voltage characteristics.

[0059] A schematic diagram of a circuit according to another embodiment of the invention is shown in FIG. 14. This circuit implements a common cathode OLED anay configurations. In the writing mode, the input cunent from an external cunent data source 41 creates a voltage drop across a reference OLED 141. A difference amplifier 33 in negative feedback connection is designed to hold the same voltage level on a pixel OLED 142. During the hold mode, the cunent with a programmed current level flows through both the transistor 146 and the OLED 142 due to the voltage stored across the capacitor Cs.

[0060] Although the exemplary embodiments of the present invention are described in conjunctions with OLEDs, it is also contemplated other similar display elements such as a light emitting diode (LED) could be used in other embodiments.

[0061] The present invention has been described with regard to one or more embodiments. However, it will be apparent to persons skilled in the art that a number of variations and modifications can be made without departing from the scope of the invention as defined in the claims.

Claims

What is claimed is:
1. A pixel circuit for use in a display, the display comprising a plurality of pixels with each pixel having a select line, a signal line, a feedback line, the pixel circuit comprising: a light emitting element; a drive part for providing a drive cunent to the light emitting element, the drive part having a storage capacitor and a switch use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the select line, and a first terminal connected to the signal line, and a second terminal; and an on-pixel feedback element for generating a feedback voltage representing a drive cunent provided to the light emitting element, the feedback signal being provided to the feedback line.
2. The pixel circuit according to claim 1 , wherein the feedback element is a feedback circuit.
3. The pixel circuit according to claim 1 , wherein the drive part further comprises a drive use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the second terminal of the switch use transistor, a first terminal connected to the light emitting element and a second terminal.
4. The pixel circuit according to claim 2, wherein the feedback circuit comprises: a resistor connected between the second terminal of said drive use transistor and a potential providing the feedback voltage at a level proportional to the drive cunent; and a feedback transistor having a gate connected to the select line, a first terminal connected to the second terminal of the drive use transistor and a second terminal connected to the feedback line.
5. The pixel circuit according to claim 1 , wherein the drive part further comprises a first transistor having a gate terminal, a first terminal and a second terminal, and a second drive use transistor having a gate terminal, a first terminal and a second terminal, the first transistor and the second drive use transistor ananged to form a cunent minor structure, the gate terminals connected to the second terminal of the switch use transistor, the first terminal of the first transistor and the first terminal of the. second drive use transistor connected to a power supply node, the second terminal of the second drive use transistor connected to the light emitting element.
6. The pixel circuit according to claim 3, wherein the feedback circuit further comprises a resistor connected between the second terminal of the first transistor and a potential to provide the feedback signal in form of voltage level proportional to the current level of drive cunent and a feedback transistor connected between the second terminal of the first transistor and the feedback line and having a gate connected to the select line.
7. The pixel circuit according to claim 1 , wherein the drive part further comprises a first transistor having a gate terminal, a first terminal and a second terminal and a second drive use transistor having a gate terminal, a first terminal and a second terminal, the first transistor and the second drive us transistor being ananged to form a cunent mirror structure, the gate terminals being connected to the second terminal of the switch use transistor, the second terminal of the first transistor being connected to said feedback line, the first terminal of the second drive use transistor is comiected to said light emitting element, the second terminal of the drive use transistor is connected to ground.
8. The pixel circuit according to claim 5 , wherein the feedback element is a feedb ack circuit having a conductive path between the second terminal of the first transistor and the feedback line providing the feedback signal in form of a cunent level proportional to the drive cunent and a feedback transistor connected between the first terminal of the first transistor and the power supply node and having a gate terminal connected to the select line.
9. The pixel circuit according to claim 3, wherein said feedback element is a feedback circuit having a diode connected between the second terminal of said drive use transistor and a predetermined potential to provide the feedback signal in form of voltage level or cunent level and said feedback switch is an insulating gate type field effect transistor connected between the second terminal of said drive use transistor and said feedback line and having a gate comiected to said select line. j
10. The pixel circuit according to claim 3, further comprising a feedback transistor connected between the second terminal of the drive use transistor and the feedback line and having a gate connected to the first select line and the feedback circuit further comprises a switch transistor having a gate terminal connected to the second select line, a first terminal connected to the second terminal of the drive use transistor, a second terminal connected to a ground potential to provide the feedbac signal in form of cunent level equal to the drive cunent.
11. The pixel circuit according to claim 1, wherein said light emitting element is an organic light emitting diode.
12. The pixel circuits according to claim 5 , wherein the transistors are insulating gate type field effect transistors that comprise n-channel and p-channel type transistors.
13. A pixel circuit for use in a display, the display comprising a plurality of pixels with each pixel having a first select line, a second select line, a signal line, a feedback line, the pixel circuit comprising: a light emitting element; a drive part for providing a drive cunent to the light emitting element, the drive part comprising: a storage capacitor; a switch use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the first select line, a first terminal connected to the signal line and a second terminal; a drive use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the second terminal of the switch use transistor, a first terminal and a second terminal connected to the light emittmg element; and an on-pixel feedback circuit for generating a feedback voltage representing a drive cunent provided to the light emitting element, the feedback circuit comprising: a resistor connected between the second terminal of said drive use transistor and a potential; and a feedback transistor having a gate connected to the second select line, a first terminal comiected to the first terminal of the drive use transistor and a second terminal connected to the feedback line.
14. The pixel circuit according to claim 13 wherein the switch use and drive use transistors are n-type, and the feedback transistor is p-type.
15. The pixel circuit according to claim 13 wherein the switch use and drive use transistors are p-type, and the feedback transistor is n-type.
16. A pixel circuit for use in a display, the display comprising a plurality of pixels with each pixel having a select line, a signal line, a feedback line, the pixel circuit comprising: a light emitting element; a drive part for providing a drive cunent to the light emitting element, the drive part comprising: a storage capacitor; a switch use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the select line, a first terminal connected to the signal line and a second terminal; a drive use transistor having a gate terminal connected to the second terminal of the switch use transistor, a first terminal and a second terminal connected to the light emitting element; and an on-pixel feedback circuit for generating a feedback voltage representing a drive cunent provided to the light emitting element, the feedback circuit comprising: a resistor connected between the second terminal of said drive use transistor and a potential; and a feedback transistor having a gate connected to the select line, a first terminal connected to the first terminal of the drive use transistor and a second terminal connected to the feedback line.
17. The pixel circuit according to claim 16 wherein the switch use transistor , drive use transistor and the feedback transistor are p-type.
18. A display device, comprising: a select line; a signal line to which a voltage signal in accordance with both brightness and feedback information is supplied; a feedback line to which a feedback voltage signal in accordance with current level of drive cunent is supplied; a plurality of pixels forming an anay of pixels, each pixel of the plurality formed on a substrate at an intersecting portion of said scanning line and said signal and feedback lines, each pixel comprising: a light emitting element; a cunent driving circuit having a storage capacitor and a switch use transistor; and a feedback circuit to provide feedback signals representing a cunent output of said cunent driving .circuit; a display column control circuit for receiving input signals, adjusting the input signals using a reference circuit formed on the substrate at each column, and modifying the input signals in response to the feedback signals from pixels in the column to produce a desired brightness level of said light emitting element in a selected pixel; and a selecting line drive circuit for successively activating selecting lines.
19. The display device claimed in claim 13, wherein said feedback circuit includes a resistor to provide the feedback signal in form ofa voltage level proportional to the drive cunent, and said reference circuit includes a reference resistor made from the same material as said resistor.
20. The display device claimed in claim 13, wherein said reference circuit includes a photo-sensor optically coupled to a reference light emitting element for brightness control, and said display column control circuit includes a compensating part to compare a generated photocunent level with an input current level and to adjust a cunent through said reference light emitting element to achieve a desired brightness level.
21. A method of driving a plurality of light emitting elements ananged in a column at a desired brightness, comprising the steps of: selecting one pixel of a plurality of pixels in the column; establishing the desired brightness of a reference light emitting element by adjusting a reference cunent flowing through the light emitting element in response to a photocunent from a photo-sensor that is optically coupled with the reference light emitting element; converting the reference cunent into a conesponding voltage level; transmitting the voltage level to the selected pixel; converting the voltage level into a drive cunent and generating a feedback signal representing a drive cunent level; adjusting the voltage level in response to the feedback signal from the selected pixel to establish a drive cunent substantially equal to the reference cunent; storing the adjusted voltage level; and driving the light emitting element with the drive cunent in accordance with the adjusted voltage level to produce the desired brightness level in the pixel.
PCT/CA2004/001742 2003-09-23 2004-09-23 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels WO2005029456A1 (en)

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CA2,443,206 2003-09-23
CA002443206A CA2443206A1 (en) 2003-09-23 2003-09-23 Amoled display backplanes - pixel driver circuits, array architecture, and external compensation
CA2,472,689 2004-06-29
CA002472689A CA2472689A1 (en) 2004-06-29 2004-06-29 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels

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US10/554,754 US7978187B2 (en) 2003-09-23 2004-07-23 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels
JP2006527247A JP2007506145A (en) 2003-09-23 2004-09-23 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels
EP04786662A EP1676257A4 (en) 2003-09-23 2004-09-23 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels
CA002519100A CA2519100C (en) 2003-09-23 2004-09-23 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels
US13/113,651 US8553018B2 (en) 2003-09-23 2011-05-23 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels
US14/046,480 US8941697B2 (en) 2003-09-23 2013-10-04 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels
US14/568,517 US9472139B2 (en) 2003-09-23 2014-12-12 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels
US15/266,474 US9852689B2 (en) 2003-09-23 2016-09-15 Circuit and method for driving an array of light emitting pixels

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US11/554,754 A-371-Of-International US8451875B2 (en) 2004-10-01 2006-10-31 Vertical cavity surface emitting laser having strain reduced quantum wells
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