By Kurt Woock

According to the manufacturer Sony Electronics, there is something exciting on the horizon in the way of displays for medical imaging. It’s a technology-in-development 20.5-inch Organic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) monitor. This work-in-progress is true monochrome OLED and may set new standards in medical-grade monitors, according to the vendor.

The OLED breakthrough, designed for a variety of procedures, improves display performance for a wide range of clinical and reference applications with high luminance, wide viewing angle, high contrast, and rich black reproduction.

Since OLED panels are self-emitting devices, light emission is completely shut off when displaying black colors, enabling the reproduction of images with high contrast and unprecedented levels of deep black. With 10x quicker response time than LCD, one of the greatest advantages of OLED—in addition to its detail—is its ability to display quick motion with virtually no motion blur.

LMD-DM50 Pair_HR-2_FINAL Sony’s LMD-DM50

Sony has a long history of introducing new display innovations. In just the past year alone, the company unveiled a full line of diagnostic medical imaging monitors for radiology and the industry’s first OLED monitor designed for a variety of surgical procedures. Now Sony is taking OLED even further. At RSNA 2012, Sony demonstrated a prototype of the technology in development 20.5 inch OLED panel, designed to provide superb image reproduction and high resolution.

The company is presently exploring monochrome OLED technology in development for mammography. With its quick response time, deep blacks and high contrast, the manufacturer says OLED technology in development shows promise for both mammography and 3D breast tomosynthesis reading. Sony is planning a comprehensive clinical evaluation including a comparison of LCD versus OLED, blind studies and actual reading. As always, interviews with end-users will provide important feedback that will allow Sony to further improve the technology.

While there are other OLED monitor technologies available on the market, Sony says the key advantage of theirs lies in the combination of Sony’s Super Top Emission (STE) panel structure design and the Sony processor that drives the OLED. The result is a two-fold benefit. First, higher reliability as the STE layer protects the panel from degradation due to moisture, and secondly, higher quality images.  Image quality can also be attributed to a combination of proprietary design and an advanced color filter that delivers higher color purity, uniformity and contrast.  In fact, Sony’s professional OLED technology received a 2012 Technical Emmy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Engineering Development.