LED Phosphors

  • October 2012
  • -
  • Yole Developpement
  • -
  • 225 pages

At the dawn of the HB LED industry in the early 2000’s, the bulk of the LED phosphor industry was under the control of the major LED players that held key IP in the various domains, and selectively granted licenses and cross-licenses. The landscape changed in the mid 2000’s with the emergence of phosphors that were “IP-free” credible alternatives to YAG and TAG, commercialized on the open market by independent phosphor manufacturers unaffiliated with LED manufacturers.

This report provides a detailed list of more than 50 companies that are involved in LED phosphor manufacturing. More than 20 of them are located in China, where we’re observing the emergence of vendors with improving quality and potentially credible IP to satisfy the tier-one Chinese LED makers that have world class ambitions and who favor IP and performance vs. price.

Overall, we expect the phosphor market to grow significantly during the next five years, and potentially pass the $1 billion mark by the end of this period. However, a significant fraction of this market will remain captive. This report provides average selling price trends and detailed forecasts by phosphor type and composition.

The combination of YAG phosphor + blue LED remains the solution of choice for applications where high CRI and warm color temperature are not required, but Nichia’s strong IP limits access to YAG to selected partners and major LED manufacturers that have been able to negotiate cross-license agreements thanks to their own strong IP position. While still not on an equal footing with YAG in terms of performance, Silicates have improved significantly and are closing the gap. However, as Nichia’s critical IP is set to expire in the next few years, an increasing number of phosphor manufacturers are offering YAG compositions as well.

The next battle in the LED phosphor industry stems from the rapid growth of LED applications that require warm colors and saturated reds in display or residential and retail lighting. For these, additional red and/or green phosphors are added to the mix. Nitrides and Oxynitrides offer excellent performance but are both controlled by Denka and Mitsubishi Chemicals, with strong IP obtained from NIMS. Market price for these materials is 5x to 10x higher than that of yellow phosphors.

Multiple organizations are therefore scrambling to develop better, cheaper and non IP-restricted compositions. Tungstates, molybdates, carbidonitrides, Green Aluminates and Selenides are being investigated. In addition, Quantum Dots are finally emerging as a credible alternative to traditional phosphor in some applications.

But phosphor composition is not the only key factor. Manufacturing technology, deposition methods and system design all have significant impact on LED and overall system cost and performance. This report provides a detailed list of established and emerging compositions and deposition technologies.

Remote phosphors offer significant benefits in terms of system performance and efficiency.
However, they increase the required amount of phosphor material and associated cost by orders of magnitude. This constitutes the major roadblock for adoption. With some applications though, remote phosphors are the best option for reaching the required performance, and the additional phosphor cost can be partially or completely offset at the system level by improving the overall performance and reducing component count.

The adoption of remote phosphors is decided on a case-by-case basis depending on the application, performance and cost targets.

While supply constraints on Light Rare Earth should ease soon, tension will persist for the heavier elements, including Yttrium, Terbium and Europium, which are critical to both fluorescent lamp and LED makers. Shortages could appear and persist even after 2015. Fluorescent lamp is the major application competing with LED for these resources. In the short-term, as incandescent and other inefficient light sources are phased out of the market in most countries, the consumption of fluorescent lamps will increase significantly, putting additional strain on supply.

Phosphors are a keystone of LED technologies, enabling the conversion of the monochromatic blue or near-UV light emitted by LED chips into a richer spectrum of color approaching or exceeding that of other artificial light sources.

This report provides a detailed description of the LED phosphor industry, including an extensive list of manufacturers, an analysis of established and emerging composition and deposition methods, and detailed quantifications. It also provides an analysis of major technology trends like the emergence of remote phosphor and Quantum Dots. Finally, due to its potential impact on the LED phosphor industry, the Rare Earth supply crisis and future supply and demand trends are analyzed in detail, with an emphasis on the elements that are critical for the fluorescent and LED lighting industries.

Alkane Ressource, Aratura, Asian Rare Earth, Aurora Energie Corp, Avago, Avalon Metal, Beijing Nakamura Yuji Science and Technology, Chi Mei Opto, China Glaze, Citizen Electronics, Cree, Daeioo Electronic Materials, Dalian Luming, Denka, Disco, Dominant, Dott Technology, Dow Electronic Materials, Eastman Kodak, Edison Opto, Essemtec, Everlight, Evident Technology, Force 4, GE, Global Tungsten, Great Western Mineral Group, Greenland Minerals & Energy, Grirem, Hangzhou Daming Phosphor Material, Hano-Li, Harvatek, Horner APG, Hsiung-Din, Hung-Ta, Intematix, Irico, Iswell , Jiangmen KanHoo Industry (Keheng), Jiangnan Phosphor, Jiangsu Bree Optronics, Jingneng, KAIST, KRICT, Kumho Electric, Ledzworld Technology, Leuchtstoffwerk (LWB), Lextar, LG, Light Prescription Innovators (LPI), Lightscape, Lite On, Litec, Lorad Chemical, Lucimea, Lumimicro, Lumisand, Lynas, Mason, Merck, Mesolight, Mitsubishi Chemicals, Molycorp, Mujin, Nanoco, Nanosys, Nemoto, Neo Material Technology, Nichia, NIMS, NN Crystal, Nordson Asymtek, NVC, One Dar Photon Foshan, Orissa, Osram, Pacific Light Technology, Perkin Elmer, Philips, Philips Lumileds, Phosphor Technology, Phosphortech, Plansee, QD Vision, QDLight, Quest Rare Earth, Rare Earth Element Resources, Raypower, Renaissance Lighting, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), Rohm, Samsung LED, Samyu, SANDIA, Sazento, Seoul Semiconductor, Shanghai Keyan, Shanghai Yuelong New Materials, Shareshine Optoelectronic Technology, Sharp, Shiled Group International, Shinetsu, Silian, Sojitz Corp, Soraa, Stanley, Sumitomo , Sumitomo Metal Mining, Sunon Opto, Tokyo Kagaku Kenkyusho, Toyoda Gosei, Toyota, Tridonic , UBE Material Industry, Ucore, Unity Opto, University of Münster, Vexica Technology, Vishay, Wings Enterprise, Wyndsor Lighting LLC, Xiamen Topstar Lighting, Xicato, YahSin…

Table Of Contents

Table of Contents p2

Acronyms p6

Introduction p7

Phosphor Applications - Overview and Trends p8
• Executive Summary p9
• LED Market Trends p21
• Executive Summary
• Segmentations of HB LEDs
• Overview of LED Applications
• History of LED Industry Growth Cycles
• Packaged LED Revenue Forecast by Application
• Recent Trends
• Packaged LED Price Trends
• Leading LED Packaging Companies 2011 Revenue Ranking

Phosphor Technology Overview p32
• Executive Summary
• Overview of Phosphor Configurations and Deposition Methods
• Phosphors for LED: How to Make White LEDs?
• Phosphors Key Requirements
• Phosphor Particle Size and Distribution
• The Different Types of PC-LEDs
• PC LEDs Overview
• Angle Color Consistency
• Trends in PC LEDs
• Deposition Methods: Dispersion
• Deposition Methods: Needle vs. Jet Dispensing
• Conformal Coating
• Preformed Phosphors
• Textured Phosphors
• Package Types and Phosphor Consumption
• Illustration: COB Package
• Illustration: Preformed and Package Level Conformal Coating
• Illustration: A Variety of LED Packages

Remote Phosphors p58
• Executive Summary
• Benefits: Photon Recycling
• Benefits: Efficiency
• Benefits: Color Consistency
• Drawbacks
• Pros and Cons: Summary
• Remote Phosphor IP: Overview
• Remote Phosphor IP: Main Forces
• Remote Phosphor IP: Examples
• Remote Phosphor IP: Components
• Remote Phosphor System Architecture: 2D and 3D
• Applications: Downlight
• Example: Philips Fortimo
• Applications: LED Replacement Bulb
• Example: Philips Endura
• System Design Considerations
• System Design Considerations: Example
• Remote Phosphor Potential Applications

Phosphor Compositions p80
• Executive Summary
• Overview
• Most Standard Phosphor Compositions
• Emerging or Less Common Phosphor Compositions
• Garnet Phosphor: Compositions and IP
• Garnet Phosphor: Manufacturing
• Silicate Phosphor: Overview and IP
• Silicate Phosphor: Thermal Quenching
• Silicate Phosphor: Manufacturing
• Nitride and Oxynitride Phosphors: History and IP
• Nitride and Oxynitride Phosphors: Main Players
• Nitride and Oxynitride Phosphors: Manufacturing
• Nitride and Oxynitride Phosphors: Examples
• Sulfides: Overview
• Sulfides: Manufacturing
• Prospective Phosphor Compositions: Narrow Band Emitters
• Future Directions
• Summary

Market Analysis and Quantifications p109
• Executive Summary
• Leading Manufacturers: Europe and North America
• Zoom on China
• Leading Manufacturers: Rest of Asia
• Phosphor ASP: Overview
• Phosphor ASP: Variability
• Phosphor ASP: Details
• Element of Supply Chains
• LED Phosphor IP: Overview
• LED Phosphor IP: Recent Examples
• LED Phosphor IP: Consequences
• Market Quantifications: Methodology
• Market Quantifications: Surface of Phosphor Converted Chips
• Market Quantifications: Challenges
• Market Quantifications: Key Hypothesis
• Market Quantifications: Scenario #1: No Remote Phosphor
• Market Quantifications: Remote Phosphor Hypothesis
• Market Quantifications: Volumes with Remote Phosphors
• Market Quantifications: Revenue
• Market Quantifications: Captive and Open Markets

Quantum Dots and Nano Phosphors p142
• Executive Summary
• Overview and Definition
• Manufacturing
• Manufacturing (illustrations)
• Display Applications
• Conclusions for Displays
• Partnerships in Display
• Lighting Applications
• Conclusions for Lighting
• Examples: Lighting
• Quantum Dots in EL Mode
• Main Players
• Nano-Phosphors

Rare Earth Supply and Demand p160
• Executive Summary
• Overview
• Major Rare Earth Element Applications
• Main Applications per Element
• Rare Earth Oxide Consumption Trends
• Supply and Demand: Overview
• Supply and Demand: Rare Earth as a Geo-Political Strategic Asset for China
• Supply and Demand: China Rare Earth Policies
• Domestic Consumption in China
• China Export Quotas
• REO Price Trends
• China: Domestic vs. FOB prices
• Supply and Demand Trends
• Rare Earth Distribution in Different Mines (examples)
• Major Rare Earth Operations under Development
• Long-Term Supply Trends
• Rare Earth Use in Lighting Phosphors
• Rare Earth Crisis Impact on Fluorescent Lamps
• Rare Earth Crisis Impact on LED
• Supply and Demand Trends of Rare Earth for Phosphor Use
• LED or Fluorescence: Rare Earth Content Estimate

Company Profiles p187
• Summay p188
• Dalian Luming p189
• Denka p191
• Grirem p196
• Intematix p198
• Litec - Merck p203
• Leuchtstoffwerk (LWB) p208
• Mitsubishi Chemical p212
• Nakamura Yuji Science and Technology p217
• Nichia p220

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