Tanks, submarines, F-22 Raptors, and other high-impact, high-tech military technology need high-end displays. Normal LCD monitors are flat and convenient but don't have the toughness that is required of military hardware. They freeze too easily, boil too easily, and break too easily. Vertex LCD, under the guidance of its CEO D.K. Kim, creates the ruggedized LCD displays for military applications at its head office in Placentia, CA.
"I joined the LCD business in the very early stages. At that time the LCD was originally developed in the USA, commercialized in Japan, and worldwide accepted by Koreans. The technology flourished in Korea. What I did is that I used to work for the development and production of panels," President Kim said. "Now, we are producing a quite different type of special panel. That type of displays are tough due to the special type of crystals we use."
Vertex LCD has offices in Korea, Hong Kong, and the US. Its sensitive military hardware work is done only in California, however.
When Dr. Kim was asked whether the global financial crisis had affected the LCD industry, he replied, "Not really, not really. Because, you know, the LCD business is a very capital-intensive business, the same as the semiconductor business. At first, huge investments must be made. And we face cycles - every two years we have a downturn. Demand and supply, there is always a big gap." He explained that when demand is high most LCD companies gain a huge amount of profit, which they invest into their infrastructure to prepare for the next low in the cycle. This means that LCD companies generally have their own economy that is unaffected by the largest economic market. "Besides, LCDs are a key component of all electrical products," Lee said. One can't hardly get through the day without running into several LCD products. The industry is not hurting, as Mr. Lee pointed out.
Vertex LCD was founded by Gene Huh, who started the company with the motto of Engineered for Excellence." But it is not just a catch phrase with Vertex LCD employees, according to the company's web site.. It is practiced daily in all their operations spread out over three continents.
Vertex has introduced innovative and outstanding products to the market in the past 8 years of business. These include slim, low power, bright LCDs and rugged backlights for rugged notebook computers.
Vertex has recently announced that it has developed two color TFT display models that feature Night Vision Imaging System (NVIS) compliant light-emitting diode (LED) back lighting systems. According to their press release, both 5.0-in VGA and 10.4-in XGA Dual Mode High Bright Daylight Viewable/Night Vision LCD models meet NVIS Mil-3009 Type I or Type II NVIS standards. Designed for high brightness in high ambient conditions and low light NVIS filtered applications, Vertex LCD displays can be used in the full range of NVIS applications, including displays in military aircraft cockpits, tanks, trucks, ground mobile applications, and a broad range of other applications.