Abstract

Contrast ratio is an important measure of the performance of an electrooptic display. From measurements of film brightness and transmittance, we determined contrast ratios of thin polymer films containing microdroplets of liquid crystalline material. Contrast ratios based on brightness were typically ~3 for all samples studied, whereas contrast ratios based on transmittance varied from ~20 to 200 depending on the sample. We explain these differences by analyzing the relations between the illumination geometries in the two measurements and the voltage-dependent multiple scattering of light which controls the electrooptic performance of the films. Effects of the spectral content of the light source and the response of the human eye on contrast ratio were also determined. The results presented here demonstrate the importance of standardizing procedures for measuring contrast ratios of these new liquid crystal films.

© 1987 Optical Society of America

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