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Sharp's 3-D LCD display technology

With Sharp's 3-D LCDs users can enjoy realistic three-dimensional images without having to wear special goggles. And since they support switching electrically between flat display (2-D) and three-dimensional display (3-D) modes, they can be used in new products optimized for 3-D content as well as for applications where conventional LCDs are presently used. For example, a 3-D LCD computer monitor could display word processor and spreadsheet files in the 2-D mode while employing the 3-D mode for computer graphics and games. This new type of display device makes possible a range of new applications providing three-dimensional images with an enhanced level of visual ambience.

The directions in which light leaves the display are controlled so that the left and right eyes see different images. This makes it possible for the image on the screen to appear in three-dimensions without the user having to wear special goggles.
The basic principle of the parallax barrier system used has been understood for some time. It is achieved using a structure incorporating a conventional TFT LCD and a specially developed "switching liquid crystal."
The switching liquid crystal is used to implement the parallax barrier and control the directions in which light leaves the display. This ensures that different patterns of light reach the left and right eyes of the viewer.
The images for both the left and right eyes are displayed together on the TFT LCD, resulting in a 3-D display in which the appropriate images reach each of the viewers eyes.
The parallax barrier is controlled electrically using the switching liquid crystal. When light is allowed to pass through freely the separation between the left and right eye images disappears, allowing 2-D content to be perceived identically by the left and right eyes. In this mode the display panel functions in the same manner as a conventional LCD.

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