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Relec senses a wave of new uses for displays

22 January 2020

Relec-Polarized Lens_580x280

Relec Electronics & Digiwise have partnered to develop a quarter-wave retarder film, allowing displays to be viewed at any angle – even when wearing polarised lens sunglasses.

TFT displays are increasingly used in industrial and municipal applications, such as transportation, where they can be viewed in varying lighting conditions, but are still expected to provide clear, readable information. Especially in outdoor or safety areas, viewing TFT displays when wearing polarised sunglasses can be problematic, as the screen can appear virtually black when viewed at some angles.

Working with partners at TFT display specialist, Digiwise, Relec Electronics has introduced a quarter wave retarder film to enhance viewing.

Figure 1. Light travelling through a quarter wave film (right) is unaffected by the angle of polarised lenses

The light output from TFT displays is inherently polarised in one plane. If this plane is 90 degrees out of sync with the wearer’s sunglasses, this can render the screen virtually black to the observer, whether the screen is in standard landscape or portrait mode. Applying a wave retarder film over the display controls the light wave polarisation. It has different refraction indices for linearly polarised light, travelling in either the fast or slow, perpendicular axes. By optimising these light wave characteristics, polarisation can be controlled (see Figure 1), for viewing when wearing polarised lens sunglasses.


Relec’s 12.1-inch TFT modules offer an extremely high brightness level – up to 1500cd/m2, making them suitable for both indoor and outdoor applications. When fitted with a quarter wave retarder film, these displays can be used in either portrait or landscape mode, even when the user is wearing polarised sunglasses.

Relec offers a wide range of display options, including projective capacitive (PCAP) or resistive touch screens, optical bonding, water rejection, glove touch and anti-bacterial films.


Relec’s team of engineers is on hand to help customers develop the best solution for a specific application, and knowledgeable staff can help with sourcing and manufacturing. Relec carries stock on most display items.

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