News Column

Patent Issued for Method and System for Displaying 3D Images

June 24, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Journal of Technology -- According to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews journalists, a patent by the inventors Tseng, Szu-Heng (Hsin-Chu, TW); Lin, Hong-Shen (Hsin-Chu, TW); Jhong, Jhao-Quei (Hsin-Chu, TW), filed on April 13, 2011, was published online on June 10, 2014.

The assignee for this patent, patent number 8749622, is AU Optronics Corp. (Science-Based Industrial Park, Hsin-Chu, TW).

Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The present invention is related to a method and a system for displaying 3D images, and more particularly, to a method and a system for displaying 3D images with reduced image interference.

"Three-dimensional (3D) display technology provides more vivid visual experiences than traditional two-dimensional (2D) display technology. In general, the stereoscopic image processing involves presenting left-eye images and right-eye images respectively to the left eye and right eye of a viewer. In this way, an illusion of depth is created by simulating normal vision. The visual cortex of the human brain fuses this into perception of a 3D scene or composition.

"There are two major types of 3D viewing environments: autostereoscopic 3D display system and glasses-type 3D display system. In autostereoscopic viewing environment, stereoscopic images are directly generated using e-holographic, volumetric, or multi-planar optical devices and can be viewed without additional devices. However, in additional to higher costs, the depth/brightness performance of an autostereoscopic 3D display system is limited and its 3D effect varies with viewer position.

"In glasses-type viewing environment, 3D viewing devices, such as polarizing glasses, shutter glasses, or anaglyph glasses are required to create the illusion of stereoscopic images from planer images. Polarizing glasses, widely used in I-MAX movie theaters, include two lenses with different polarization (such as a horizontally polarized left-eye lens and a vertically polarized right-eye lens). A projecting equipment is used for providing images with different polarization, such as horizontally polarized left-eye images and vertically polarized right-eye images). Therefore, a user can view the left-eye images with the left eye and the right-eye images with the right eye. The left-eye images and the right-eye images have identical contents but different depths, thereby capable of simulating stereoscopic effect in human brain.

"In a prior art active-matrix organic light-emitting diode (AMOLED) 3D display system using polarizing glasses, a liquid crystal polarizing panel is disposed on an AMOLED display panel: when the AMOLED display panel is displaying left-eye images L, the liquid crystal molecules of the liquid crystal polarizing panel are rotated to a specific angle .theta..sub.L; when the AMOLED display panel is displaying right-eye images R, the liquid crystal molecules of the liquid crystal polarizing panel are rotated to another specific angle .theta..sub.R. Therefore, the left-eye images s L and the right-eye images R may be polarized differently.

"FIG. 1 illustrates the operation of the prior 3D display system when the liquid crystal polarizing panel liquid changes the rotation of its crystal molecules according to the scan direction of the AMOLED display panel. Assuming left-eye images L and right-eye images R are alternatively displayed during the sub frame periods F.sub.1L F.sub.1R F.sub.2L F.sub.2R . . . , and the prior art liquid crystal polarizing panel begins to switch the angle of its liquid crystal molecules at the start of each sub frame period. In the ideal scenario, the liquid crystal polarizing panel is able to make immediate angle switch of its liquid crystal molecules at the moment the AMOLED display panel switches between left-eye and right-eye images. In the real situation, the rotation of liquid crystal molecules requires a reaction time T.sub.LC (represented by the striped region in FIG. 1). For 120 Hz operational frequency, the length of the sub frame periods F.sub.1L F.sub.1R F.sub.2L F.sub.2R . . . is 8.3 ms. Thus, the liquid crystal polarizing panel is configured to switch the angle of its liquid crystal molecules every 8.3 ms, but it takes reaction time T.sub.LC of about 3 ms before the liquid crystal molecules reach a predetermined angle. In other words, during the reaction time T.sub.LC, the user can only view a single left-eye image or a single right-eye image in the ideal scenario, but the user actually views both the left-eye image and the right-eye image in reality. This kind of image crosstalk largely influences the display quality."

In addition to obtaining background information on this patent, VerticalNews editors also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "The present invention provides a method for displaying stereoscopic images, including dividing a frame period of a specific image into a first sub frame period and a second sub frame period; generating a corresponding first sub image and a corresponding second sub image according to the specific image; providing the first sub image during the first sub frame period and providing the second sub image during the second frame period; when the first sub frame period begins, starting to rotate liquid crystal molecules of a liquid crystal polarizing panel from a second angle to a first angle for providing a first polarization angle to the first sub image; during the first sub frame period when the liquid crystal molecules of the liquid crystal polarizing panel are rotating from the second angle to the first angle, turning off OLEDs in a pixel array of a display panel for displaying a black image; and after the liquid crystal molecules of the liquid crystal polarizing panel have reached the first angle in the first sub frame period, sequentially turning on each OLED row for displaying the first sub image.

"The present invention further provides a 3D display system including an image processor configured to divide a frame period of a specific image into a first sub frame period and a second sub frame period and generate a corresponding first sub image and a corresponding second sub image according to the specific image; a display panel including a pixel array having a plurality of OLED rows; a driving circuit configured to provide the first sub image to corresponding OLEDs in the pixel array during the first sub frame period and provide the second sub image to corresponding OLEDs in the pixel array during the second sub frame period; a liquid crystal polarizing panel disposed at a side of the display panel for changing a polarization angle of an image by rotating liquid crystal molecules, wherein the first sub image has a first polarization angle after passing through the liquid crystal polarizing panel when the liquid crystal molecules are a first angle and the second sub image has a second polarization angle after passing through the liquid crystal polarizing panel when the liquid crystal molecules are a second angle; and a controller configured to control the liquid crystal polarizing panel so as to start rotating the liquid crystal molecules from the second angle to the first angle when the first sub frame period begins, control the liquid crystal polarizing panel so as to start rotating the liquid crystal molecules from the first angle to the second angle when the second sub frame period begins, and turn off OLEDs in the pixel array for displaying a black image during a period when the liquid crystal molecules of the liquid crystal polarizing panel are rotating from the first angle to the second angle or from the second angle to the first angle.

"These and other objectives of the present invention will no doubt become obvious to those of ordinary skill in the art after reading the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment that is illustrated in the various figures and drawings."

For more information, see this patent: Tseng, Szu-Heng; Lin, Hong-Shen; Jhong, Jhao-Quei. Method and System for Displaying 3D Images. U.S. Patent Number 8749622, filed April 13, 2011, and published online on June 10, 2014. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=8749622.PN.&OS=PN/8749622RS=PN/8749622

Keywords for this news article include: Technology, AU Optronics Corp..

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Source: Journal of Technology


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