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Liquid crystals from Merck – 100 years of experience, competence and technology leadership. Liquid crystal displays can be encountered everywhere in our modern world, and there is practically no area of our daily lives where not at least one LCD plays an essential role.

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Liquid CrystalsMerck makes communication visible

TopTopics@merck.de

Sales growth in the Liquid Crystals division between the years 1970 and 2005 reflects the very rapid development in the area of liquid crystal displays.

Contents

Forewords

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Flat is beautiful LCDs as part of our modern life

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Chemistry for home cinema, SMS, chat room & Co . LCs and LCD technology from Merck.............................................. 11 Team solutions wanted Customer-centric research & development

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On our venture for innovations Mercks OLED activities............................................................... 23 Consolidating our strong market position Active patent strategy................................................................. 26 Focus on customer proximity LC locations in Asia.................................................................... 27 Rooted in Darmstadt Company profile of Merck KGaA ..................................................... 32 Contacts to Mercks LC experts ..................................................... 34

chemists, physicists and applications engineers with our customers have been the key to our continued technology leadership and our undisputed global market leadership in liquid crystals . By keeping a finger on the market pulse, we were able to anticipate the huge increases in demand arising from the first boom in mobile phones, then computer monitors and now televisions: Already years ago, we made the decision to invest 250 million euros at the site of our headquarters in Darmstadt for setting up a new production plant for liquid crystals . We have also further expanded our mixture production capacities in good time at our production sites in Asia . Thus we are optimally prepared for the continuous rise in demand of the Asia-based display industry for LC mixtures, above all for notebooks, PC monitors and the extremely successful LCD televisions . We are sure that we are on the right track . By providing sufficient production capacities, building a comprehensive patent portfolio and investing heavily in research, we will consolidate and further expand our strong market position . Key to this are the knowledge and motivation of our team-oriented, entrepreneurial employees . I wish you pleasurable reading of our new brochure about the international, customer-centric activities of our Liquid Crystals division . Sincerely,

Dr. Michael Rmer Chairman of the Executive Board of Merck KGaA

Dear Readers,Have you seen liquid crystals in action yet today? In your alarm clock perhaps? Or in the display of your mobile phone? Our chemistry makes light, energysaving displays possible, and these in turn make fast information and modern communication visible for its liquid crystals that magic sharp images onto the LCDs of our computer monitors and televisions . The history of these substances is one of Mercks great success stories . Over 100 years ago shortly after the botanist Friedrich Reinitzer discovered, by chance more than anything, the phenomenon of the liquid crystal phase Merck already began to provide these chemicals to scientists . A pure research topic evolved into an innovation when the first LC display was presented at the end of the 1960s . LCs became an economic success in the 1980s: Through family tree chemistry, for example, we could help to speed up the production process . The strategic focus on LCs for TFT displays and the formation of a customer-centric, independent division proved to be good decisions . Our firm belief in the future potential of these unusual substances and, above all, the close cooperation of our interdisciplinary teams of

Dr . Michael Rmer

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Dr. Paul Breddels Executive Vice President of the Liquid Crystals division

In a word lets be honest: Who could have ever predicted such a huge boom in mobile phones? And the next boom of its kind is in the making . This time in the area of LCD televisions . At present 50 million households worldwide already have one of these stylish and superflat LCD TVs and in just two years time there are expected to be over 100 million . Tendency: rising! This has all been made possible thanks to our superfluorinated liquid crystals . These are a totally new generation of liquid crystals and without them the large liquid crystal displays needed for fast-moving television images could not be realized . This was such a pioneering new development that our researchers were awarded the German Future Prize for it by the Federal President in 2003 . We are proud of our achievements . But we do not want to, and will not, rest on our laurels . Our liquid crystal research daily serves the wishes of our customers, who place the highest expectations on us and on the development of new, special liquid crystals for even larger, higher-resolution televisions . From South Korea, Taiwan, Japan and Hong Kong we supply our customers directly and just-in-time with liquid crystal mixtures that are customized for the application .

And although liquid crystal displays will presumably remain the dominant flat panel display technology for years to come, it is natural to us that we are now already working on potential future technologies . In the field of organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) we have expanded our portfolio by acquiring two topclass competence teams . On the one hand, we aim to develop innovative light sources that could be used for home lighting, household appliances and LCD backlighting, as well as in the automotive industry . On the other hand, OLEDs are also suitable to produce small and above all flexible displays although some technical problems need to be solved before this can be realized . We are working intensively, particularly with our research teams in Frankfurt and Mainz, on the continuation of the scientific success story . The success of liquid crystals is due above all to our intensive, close and trustworthy cooperation with the display industry . We and our customers have always had a very special relationship: A fruitful alliance and partnership based on mutual trust and cooperation a relationship of giving and taking for the benefit of each other . I would like to express my special thanks for this on behalf of all employees of the Liquid Crystals division . Sincerely,

Dr. Paul Breddels

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Liquid Crystals Merck makes communication visible

Flat LCD televisions, with their captivating picture quality, have replaced bulky televisions in shop windows. The race for computer monitors has already been decided: Already twice as many LCD monitors as cathode ray tube monitors were sold in 2005.

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Flat is beautiful

Flat is beautifulLCDs as part of our modern lifeLiquid crystals from Merck 100 years of experience, competence and technology leadership . Liquid crystal displays can be encountered everywhere in our modern world, and there is practically no area of our daily lives where not at least one LCD plays an essential role. Liquid crystals are found in the displays of electronic games and mobile phones, PC monitors and notebooks, navigation systems and many mobile devices, as well as televisions and industrial control panels. Whereas the displays of automated teller machines (ATMs) and cash dispensers have a narrow viewing angle that prevents unwanted viewing from either side, televisions should have a wider viewing angle that allows us a clear view from a variety of positions in the room. Special displays and consequently special liquid crystal mixtures are needed for each of these applications. Merck has been active in the liquid crystal business for over 100 years although in the early days you could hardly have referred to it as a business. It was rather a case of Merck providing scientists with liquid crystal substances for their research in the companys known high degree of purity. It was not until 1967 after a Sleeping Beauty-like slumber for liquid crystals when the first technical application of liquid crystals in displays was presented, that Merck took up the thread again and started actual business.

Liquid crystals : The botanist Friedrich Reinitzer was the first to observe a peculiar behavior of cholesteryl benzoate while investigating its melting point; the physicist Otto Lehmann explained it by assuming a new, yet unknown state of aggregation and introduced the term liquid crystals. Since 1904, suitable substances with liquid crystalline properties have their place not only in this box of collections from the laboratory but also in Mercks catalog of chemicals.

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In contact with his distant spouse and Florian Skirl has his digital diary with him.

Today, there is a huge demand for liquid crystal displays. The market is demanding new products ever faster. The trends and needs of consumers are changing at an ever quicker pace and have to be rapidly satisfied by innovative products. Not only must the electronics and display industry keep up with this pace Merck also faces this challenge as a researchbased chemical company and leading manufacturer. Every new application requires a customized liquid crystal mixture. And we are able to develop, produce and deliver this just-in-time.

Mercks Liquid Crystals division For years, Merck has been the worlds leading producer of LCD materials . As partner to the display and electronics industry, Merck supplies liquid crystals, LC mixtures, and spherical spacers for maintaining uniform layer thickness in LCDs, as well as reactive mesogens for optical films used to enhance the optical properties of LCDs . Merck supports its custo

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