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Since the earliest days of the liquid crystal display (LCD) industry, Corning has led the way with product and process advances. We date our involvement in LCD technology to 1959, with the invention of our proprietary fusion process. Yet, a series of earlier events helped pave the way for our eventual success in LCD.

It all began in 1888, when Austrian scientist Friedrich Reinitzer discovered liquid crystal. However, it would be many decades before this material found a practical application in electronic displays.  (The first LCD prototype, a digital clock from RCA, was not invented until 1968, and the first active matrix LCD TV, a pocket television from Seiko Epson, did not arrive until 1984.)

In the meantime, the birth of television was changing the world. German scientist Karl Braun invented the cathode-ray tube (CRT) in 1897, and television made its public debut in the U.S. at the 1939 World’s Fair. In 1947, Corning invented the process to mass-produce glass picture tubes, making television affordable for the public. The following year, 1 million sets were sold in the U.S.

By 1949, Corning had further improved the technology, producing a lead-free glass composition for TV tubes and inventing a new method for centrifugal casting of television funnels. The company began mass-producing tubes for color television in 1953.  Just six years later, Corning invented the fusion process, creating glass that is exceptionally flat, clean, and well-suited to the exacting requirements of liquid crystal displays.  This is where Corning’s history in LCD begins.

Click below for an interactive tutorial that explains how Corning has consistently led the way in LCD technology, enabling the digital breakthroughs that continue to improve the way we live and work.

Launch Corning's History in LCDLaunch Corning's History in LCD