LG.Philips LCD announced that it has commenced mass production at P7, its 7th generation plant in Paju, Korea, by beginning the production of 42-inch panels from its 1950 X 2250mm glass substrates.
The company started the pilot run for P7, which is the world's largest 7th generation line not only in size but also in terms of production capacity, at the end of November 2005. The short time it took to achieve mass production reaffirms LG.Philips LCD's leading ability in line construction and process technology. In addition, this early start will enable the company to respond to the expected surge in demand for LCD TVs that will be further stimulated by upcoming events such as the Lunar New Year holiday and the World Cup soccer in Germany.
The first phase of P7 is scheduled to reach a production capacity of 45,000 glass sheets per month by the third quarter of 2006, and the facility is expected to reach its initial design capacity of 90,000 input sheets per month by the first quarter of 2007. This will enable LG.Philips LCD to quickly respond to the fast growing demand for large and wide LCD TVs.
The 7th generation line will initially manufacture 42-inch TV panels and then gradually increase the production ratio of 47-inch TV products to further solidify LG.Philips LCD's leadership in the 42-inch and larger LCD TV market. It is capable of producing eight 42-inch panels or six 47-inch panels from a single glass substrate.
LG.Philips LCD will be the only panel maker who operates both 6th and 7th generation lines, which will strengthen its position as a leader in the LCD TV market.
Based on its system of fab dedication, LG.Philips LCD has developed a portfolio of facilities that concentrate on specific product categories. The 6th generation line in Gumi focuses on 32- and 37-inch TV panels while the 7th generation line in Paju will focus on 42- and 47-inch TV panels. This gives LG.Philips LCD an efficient production base, and will allow it to continue its leading role in the global standardization of LCD TV sizes.
The groundbreaking ceremony for the Paju Display Cluster was held in March 2004, with subsequent site development, plant construction, equipment installation and pilot production all being completed within 22 months. With the start of mass production at P7, Paju will emerge as the center of the world's display industry.
The start of P7 will also speed up the entry of parts and equipment suppliers to the Paju Display Cluster. Investment and development to make the Paju Display Cluster a vertically-integrated LCD complex that encompasses R&D, parts and materials companies as well as the finished products, is also likely to gather pace.