Using an “Ecovative” Approach, Alumni Unveil the Next Step in HD

Roger Hajjar (ECE '88) and Amit Jain (ECE '85)
Roger Hajjar (ECE '88) and Amit Jain (ECE '85)

In the $40 billion high-definition (HD) display market, acronyms rule: LED, LCD and DLP. Prysm, Inc., a digital display technology group founded by two College of Engineering alumni, has added one more: LPD, Laser Phosphor Display, which the company says is much more energy and environmentally-efficient than current high-definition displays.

According to Prysm, Inc., which was founded by Amit Jain (’85) and Roger Hajjar (’88), LPD technology uses to up to 75 percent less power than other HD display technology, and is made using low-impact manufacturing processes and non-toxic materials without reducing the high-definition quality.

“(LPD has) the power consumption of a 100 watt light bulb per square meter and the scalability to virtually any size application,” Jain, Prysm’s CEO, said. “We knew that the image quality would appeal to commercial audio visual customers everywhere, but we also found that LPD energy efficient to be very important in every geographic market.”

Not unlike old-fashioned tube televisions, where electron beams are used to excite phosphor dots to emit light, Prysm’s technology uses low-power, long-life semiconductor lasers to emit to red, green and blue colors, with no motion blur and a longer life than current HD displays. Prysm’s initial focus is targeting large format displays used in commercial venues, such as sports arenas.

Because power consumption and operation cost are critical topics is technology display design, Prysm’s mission statements is based around “ecovation,” a commitment to development and design that exceeds industry standards for energy use and environmental impact while delivering a brilliant display.

The LPD unveiling is the latest step in a 20-plus year engineering relationship between Jain and Hajjar, who met in Professors Mike Ruane and Masud Mansuripur’s Optical Data Storage Lab. Over the years, Jain and Hajjar have collaborated on three high-tech start-up companies with technologies they’ve developed.

Five years ago, the duo launched Spudnik, described by Jain described as “high technology for couch potatoes.” Spudnik evolved into Prysm, which went public in January and has over 100 employees in San Jose, Concord, Mass., and Bangalore, India. Jain serves as CEO and Hajjar chief technology officer, and both sit on the board of the College’s West Coast Alumni Leadership Council.