California-based DPI Labs is making available its new large-format 4K ultra-high definition slim, lightweight, OLED displays for business and VVIP aircraft cabins.
Branded DPI SmartCanvas, the 55” and 65” OLED (organic light emitting diode) cabin displays were installed in January, 2021 on a VVIP Boeing 767 at a completion centre in Arizona. The installation included a complete DPI cabin management system consisting of passenger and cabin crew control panels, audio/video distribution, cabin control modules and DPI's multi-coloured LED cabin lighting. The new OLED large format displays are DO-160 compliant and PMA is expected within the next month.
“DPI Labs has a long history of firsts and innovation within the business and military aviation markets,” says Scott DeSmet, DPI's VP sales and business development. “We're proud to be first to bring the OLED large-format display technology and experience to the business and VVIP industry and continue our tradition of excellence and ingenuity.”
Unlike LED technology, which has been traditionally installed in aircraft cabins for passenger information and entertainment, OLEDs have self-illuminating pixels and do not require the extra physical layers inside the display for backlighting that LED monitors do. This makes OLED displays much thinner, lighter and allows for infinite contrast ratio and a wide viewing angle.
For comparison, a typical 65” aircraft display using LED technology weighs about 34 kg and is about 2.0” thick, where DPI's 65” OLED display weighs-in at just 10.89 kg and is only 0.36” thick. As a reference, a typical economy airline seat weighs between 33.6-38 kg.
The displays' low weights and extremely shallow depths have other considerable impacts on cabin design and overall aircraft weight. DeSmet explains: “Historically, in order to install screens this large using LED technology, the bulkhead would have had to be modified and significantly reinforced structurally in order to support the excessive mass. This adds even more overall aircraft weight and takes up additional cabin space. With our OLED displays we're able to actually flush-mount them into a standard bulkhead, displacing bulkhead weight and material and taking up zero cabin space. These are rare win-wins for our industry when we can both greatly enhance the passenger experience and reduce weight and installation time and cost.”
Another feature of DPI Lab's ultra-thin OLED displays is their ability operate with a bend radius of one metre either horizontally or vertically allowing them to conform to curved surfaces such as aircraft headliners and sidewalls. This provides aircraft interior designers with exciting and interesting new applications for cabin installation.
DPI's 55” and 65” are ultra-high definition 4K displays each with a native resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. These resolutions paired with the displays' infinite contrast ratio (the ratio between black and white on the screen) and wide viewing angle make them ideal for UHD video sources such as Blu-Ray, satellite TV, streaming video services or passengers' downloaded UHD content.
The SmartCanvas Display Line is part of DPI's SmartLink cabin management system, which includes passenger controls, cabin switching modules, LED cabin lighting and HD-UHD audio-video distribution for both new aircraft installations and retrofitting legacy aircraft systems. The company plans on launching a 33” OLED in Q3 of this year.