Earlier this year Sherpa Design was pleased to work for digital display maker, Planar Systems. The company was quickly moving forward on a new display system using transparent OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) technology. Planar needed a final design enclosure and a working prototype to show off at an upcoming trade show, and contracted with Sherpa Design to get it done.
Planar has been innovating in transparent technology for over a decade, and with their latest version, the company is focusing on display systems for retail companies, museums, and other industries looking for eye-catching displays animated with motion and video.
Sherpa Design assigned the project to their design engineer Seth Moczydlowski. Seth was provided specifications for the design: two 55” displays would be connected at approximately right angles to each other; the displays would be mounted vertically; and dimensions were provided for screen geometry and control boards.
Seth came up with a number of iterations for the enclosures, and the two teams went back and forth to select the best option. Once finalized, Seth drafted the design to be used to mount all the boards and make sure it was structurally sound. As well the design needed to withstand the habitual set up and tear down that is the daily life of any trade show environment.
Additionally, the design needed to reflect that the product needed to be shipped in a cost effective manner. Seth worked through manufacturing issues with the fabrication engineers, troubleshot design issues as they arose, and helped assemble the prototype shipped to Orlando for the trade show.
The timeline for the project didn’t leave much room for error. The initial discussions began around the middle of April, and the prototype needed to be shipped by the 1st week of June. This schedule allowed for three weeks to conceive, iterate, design and hand off the plans to the fabrication company. That in turn allowed for 3 weeks for manufacturing the parts and a couple days to put together the prototype and troubleshoot.
As seen in the accompanying video, the display came together beautifully. It shows the two side-by-side 55 inch transparent displays, set in one corner. The transparent screens provide a rich experience, with the rest of the room visible behind them.
Since the display doesn’t require a backlight, there’s no need to enclose the back. The sheets of glass are nearly freestanding, animated with motion and video, and transparent.
Overall the project opens up new possibilities for retail merchandising, museum exhibits, corporate communications, and a variety of environments that need an additional “wow” factor.
According to the company, Planar anticipates adding transparent OLED technology as a product offering in early 2016, paving the way toward broader marketplace options.
Here's a design draft of the transparent OLED display enclosure: