1. Sharp: Consolidated Financial Statements 1993. Despite a 40% decrease in profits, attributed to the drop in demand for monochrome passive STNs for word processors and notebook computers, Sharp remains in 1993 the fourth most profitable electronics company in Japan with net sales of $12.85 billion, profits of $257 million, R&D expenditures of $924 million, and 41,836 employees. In 1993, Sharp also invested $884 million for acquisitions of plant and equipment.

  2. For example see Alfred D. Chandler, "The Enduring Logic of Industrial Success." Chandler takes many examples from German industry as models to develop his thesis.

  3. "The Institute of International Finance has estimated the current scale of capital flight from Russia to be at least $1 billion a month, although this includes foreign currency legally deposited by Russian companies into Russian banks which place it overseas." Keith Bush, RFE/RL, Inc., Courtesy of Radio Liberty, FRE/RL Daily Report No. 25, 7 February 1994. From research!smarty.ece.jhu.edu!INFO-RUSS-request Mon Feb 7 22:01:34 1994.

  4. Cheryl Strauss Einhorn, "Commodities Corner: Is Jesse Helms Helping Boris Yeltsin," Barrons, February 7, 1994. The FSU ranks first in world production of several minerals including manganese, titanium metal, and nickel; second in the production of aluminum, vanadium, and platinum metals; and fourth in world gold production. It ranks first in world production of crude oil and natural gas, and third in production of coal.

  5. I found these numbers helpful in providing an idea of geographic and economic scale: Russia has 22 people per square mile in a geographic area that covers 11 time zones. Belarus has 127 people per square mile, and Ukraine has 223, in one time zone each.

    For comparison, data from the World Almanac (Pharos Books, New York, 1992) are: France in an area of 221,000 sq. miles (4/5ths the size of Texas or nearly 5 New York States) has 256 people per square mile, the United States, 68 people per square mile, and Japan, 850 people per square mile in a geographic region slightly smaller than California. Singapore has 12,303 people per square mile in a geographic area about the size of 27 Manhattans or 8 New York Cities.

    To appreciate the magnitude of the FSU task, the cost to Germany, the hub of the European Community -- with a population density of 577 people per square mile in a geographic region slightly smaller than Japan's -- of the integration of the 16 million former East Germans, the most valuable industrial jewels of the former USSR, into the German economy, is expected to be in excess of $1 trillion, of which $100 billion is for cleaning up industrial pollution.

    The U.S. national debt is $4 trillion.

  6. Most FSU resources on show are in research, and less (which is normal for a military structure) in development and small-scale manufacturing for military applications and mass production for consumer products, which does not yet seem to exist in any of these countries. In any case, on this technology evaluation, the WTEC team did not see any consumer products mass-produced in the FSU.

    Rather, the team saw Japanese electronics, German domestic appliances and cars, French and Italian fashions, and the Armand Hammer Commerce building. Team members ate at McDonalds (the one near Red Square) in Moscow, which, because of the inflation of the ruble, is now for the elite. While the price for the meal at McDonalds (made in Russia) was comparable to what it is in the United States, those of the imported products are nearly twice as expensive in Russia, after conversion to U.S. dollars, compared to their prices in the United States.

  7. The antiferroelectric property of these LCD materials was first reported by Chandani et al. in Jpn. J. Appl. Phys. 27: L729 (1988). A monochrome version was discussed at the 1991 Japanese Liquid Crystal Meeting in Sapporo. A multicolor version was discussed and shown by Y. Yamada, N. Yamamoto, M. Yamawaki, I. Kawamura, and Y. Suzuki, "Multicolor Video Rate Antiferroelectric LCDs with High Contrast and Wide View," at Japan Display 92, Proceedings of the 12th International Display Conference, Hiroshima, Japan, October 12-14, 1992, p. 57, and the full-color version shown and discussed at The Fourth International Conference on Ferroelectric Liquid Crystals, September 28-October 1, 1993, Tokyo, Japan. The speed at which this technology has advanced is impressive. This is clearly a technology to watch. For a recent review, see "Antiferroelectric Chiral Smectic Liquid Crystals" by A. Fukuda et al., J. Mater. Chem. 4, 997-1016 (1994), which includes a color picture of this display.

  8. When the WTEC team left for the FSU, information on its semiconductor industry was sparse. Since then, SemiComm has announced a new electronic newsletter, Eye on Eastern Europe, that should relieve the information bottleneck that the team experienced. The first Eye on Eastern Europe newsletter, exclusively dedicated to coverage of the semiconductor equipment and materials market in Eastern European Countries, is dated October 12, 1993. For more information on Eye on Eastern Europe, contact: Carollee Williams, SEMICOMM Department, 805 East Middlefield Road, Mountain View, CA 94043 or Fax: (415) 940-7932.
  9. See for example: V. Zvetkoff and A. Sosnovsky, Acta Physicochimica U.R.S.S. 18, 358 (1943). This paper was submitted May 13, 1943. I remember reading this in a library at Orsay and wondering how did one turn a magnet with no electrical power and no food. The siege of Leningrad was from June 1941 to January 1944.

  10. I read it shortly after arriving at Physique des Solides, Universit' Paris-Sud, Orsay, France, in 1969 and found it immensely helpful for putting this very new state of matter (for me at that time) into a physical perspective.

  11. Blinov, L. M., Electro-optical and Magneto-optical Properties of Liquid Crystals (New York: John Wiley and Sons Limited, 1993). Professor Chigrinov informed me after our evaluation trip (and I have not had an opportunity to read at the time of this report) that this book has been considerably expanded and revised with its latest version now being published as L.M. Blinov and V.G. Chigrinov, Electro-optical Properties of Liquid Crystalline Materials (N.J.: Springer-Verlag Publishers, 1993- 1994).

  12. For example, Sharp was making 30,000 ViewCam units/month in early 1993. Because demand was so high for this product, the company increased production to 100,000 units/month by the summer of 1993. In this $1,400 product, with an instant replay, the TFT LCD is 4 inches with 320 x 280 RGB pixels and a 0.33-inch CCD camera with 410,000 pixels. TechSearch International Inc. Abstract: DR020.10.

  13. For example, data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that 80% of the U.S. economy is based on the purchasing power of U.S. consumers.

  14. A 1988, therefore pre-TFT days, estimate was that the world supply of LC materials is 6 tons, of which Japan uses 5.6 tons, with Merck's estimated market share being greater than 50%. Merck also has access to novel liquid crystal materials research from British Drug House, which the company also owns. Eighteen tons is a more recent estimate of worldwide demand for liquid crystal display materials.

  15. Canon also points out possible health and ecological advantages offered by nonemissive LCDs compared to emissive display technologies that appear to be taken seriously in Europe and the FSU. The CRT has been identified as having potential health hazards to viewers. A product from Sweden that the team saw at a computer trade show in Moscow was a transparent polymer screen to place in front of a CRT screen.

    This might be rather specific to the TV manufacturer. In the United States, CRTs are expensive to dispose of because of ecological guidelines, a hidden cost factor not included in their purchase price. But, the team does not know of any studies that have shown that CRTs used in the United States are hazardous to the health.

  16. An overview of STN displays, including references to their work on the use of retardation filters, is given by its inventors T. Scheffer and J. Nehring, in "The Twisted Nematic and Supertwisted Nematic Mode LCDs" in Liquid Crystals, Applications and Uses, Vol. I, Birendra Bahadur (ed.) (N.J.: World Scientific, 1990), p. 232.

    Large area displays work in a transmission rather than in a reflection mode. As linearly polarized light travels through the liquid crystal, it becomes elliptically polarized, resulting in a loss of contrast for the display. The retardation filter returns the light to a linearly polarized state before it reaches the analyzer. This contribution was probably the single most important one to bring outstanding color and brightness to TFT LCDs.

  17. HDTV has existed in Japan for three years, but is still a gleam in the eye in the United States and is very much in the future for the FSU. At any rate, HDTV in the United States is still tied up in discussions about standards. Interestingly, in high-tech products, standards seem to be set by the first to market with a product that meets the demands of the services.

Published: December 1994; WTEC Hyper-Librarian