Liquid crystal display panel and liquid crystal display device containing the same

Abstract

A liquid crystal display panel and a liquid crystal display device containing the same are disclosed. The liquid crystal display panel of the present invention comprises: a first substrate with a pixel electrode, a data line, and a scan line formed thereon; a second substrate opposite to the first substrate; a first alignment layer disposed on the first substrate, the pixel electrode, the data line and the scan line; and a liquid crystal layer disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate, wherein the first alignment layer disposed on the pixel electrode has a first thickness, the first alignment layer disposed on at least one of the scan line and the data line has a second thickness, and the first thickness is greater than the second thickness.

Claims

What is claimed is: 1 . A liquid crystal display panel, comprising: a first substrate with a pixel electrode, a data line, and a scan line formed thereon; a second substrate opposite to the first substrate; a first alignment layer disposed on the first substrate, the pixel electrode, the data line and the scan line; and a liquid crystal layer disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate, wherein the first alignment layer disposed on the pixel electrode has a first thickness, the first alignment layer disposed on at least one of the scan line and the data line has a second thickness, and the first thickness is greater than the second thickness. 2 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 1 , wherein the first substrate comprises a display region and a non-display region, and at least one protrusion, at least one hump or a combination thereof is disposed on the first alignment layer in the non-display region. 3 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 2 , wherein a material of the first alignment layer is the same as that of the protrusion or the hump. 4 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 2 , wherein the protrusion or the hump is integrated with the first alignment layer. 5 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 2 , wherein a ratio of a height of the protrusion to a thickness of the first alignment layer adjacent to the protrusion is in a range from 2 to 10. 6 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 1 , further comprising a sealant disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate, and covering parts of the first alignment layer. 7 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 2 , further comprising a sealant disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate and covering parts of the protrusion, the hump, or the combination thereof. 8 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 1 , wherein a ratio of the first thickness to the second thickness is in a range from 1 to 10. 9 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 1 , further comprising at least one spacer disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate, wherein the first alignment layer on the spacer has a third thickness which is thinner than the first thickness and the second thickness. 10 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 1 , further comprising a color filter unit, a black matrix and a second alignment layer, wherein the color filter unit and the black matrix are disposed on the second substrate, the second alignment layer is disposed on the color filter unit and the black matrix, the second alignment layer on the color filter unit has a fourth thickness, the second alignment layer on the black matrix has a fifth thickness, and the fourth thickness is thinner than the fifth thickness. 11 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 10 , further comprising at least one spacer disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate, wherein the second alignment layer on the spacer has a third thickness, and the third thickness is thinner than the fourth thickness and the fifth thickness. 12 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 1 , further comprising a color filter unit, a black matrix, a second alignment layer and at least one spacer disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate, the second alignment layer on the spacer has a third thickness which is thinner than the first thickness and the second thickness. 13 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 1 , wherein a thin film transistor unit is further disposed on the first substrate; the thin film transistor unit comprises: a gate electrode, an insulating layer, a semiconductor layer, a source electrode and a drain electrode, wherein the insulating layer covers the gate electrode, the semiconductor layer is disposed on the insulating layer, the source electrode and the drain electrode are disposed on the semiconductor layer and separated in a predetermined distance to form a channel region; the first alignment layer is disposed on the thin film transistor unit, and has a sixth thickness on the source electrode and the drain electrode and a seventh thickness in the channel region, and the sixth thickness is thinner than the seventh thickness. 14 . The liquid crystal display panel as claimed in claim 13 , further comprising a protection layer covering the data line, the scan line and the thin film transistor unit, wherein the protection layer has an opening to expose the drain electrode, the pixel electrode is disposed on the protection layer and extends into the opening to electrically connect with the drain electrode, the first alignment layer in the opening has an eighth thickness, and the sixth thickness of the first alignment layer on the drain electrode is thinner than the eighth thickness thereof.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION [0001] 1. Field of the Invention [0002] The present invention relates to a liquid crystal display panel and a liquid crystal display device containing the same and, more particularly, to a liquid crystal display panel with novel structured alignment layers and a liquid crystal display device containing the same. [0003] 2. Description of Related Art [0004] In recent years, all the display devices are developed toward having small volume, thin thickness and light weight as the display techniques progresses. A liquid crystal display (LCD) device is a flat panel display device with a thin thickness, so a conventional cathode ray tube (CRT) display is gradually replaced by the LCD. Especially, the LCD can be applied to various fields. For example, the daily used devices such as cell phones, notebooks, video cameras, cameras, music players, navigation devices, and televisions are equipped with liquid crystal display (LCD) panels. [0005] The brightness, the contrast, the color and the viewing angles are main parameters related to the viewing effect of the LCD panels. As the developments of the LCD devices, the main stream for developing LCD panels can be divided into: twisted nematic (TN) mode, vertical alignment (VA) mode, and in-plane switching (IPS) mode. [0006] For the VA mode LCD panels, alignment layers can facilitate the orientation of the injected liquid crystal molecules to obtain the purpose of showing darkness and brightness. However, both the thin film transistor (TFT) substrate and the color filter (CF) substrate have patterns, and an altitude (or height) difference on the surface of the alignment layers is occurred due to the uniformly coated alignment layers. This altitude (or height) difference may cause the problem of non-uniform rubbing or monomer aggregation of the alignment layer, resulting in the alignment of the liquid crystal molecules not ideal enough. [0007] Therefore, it is desirable to provide a liquid crystal display panel without the problem of non-uniform rubbing or monomer aggregation of the alignment layer, to solve the problem of disclinations of liquid crystal molecules and improve the display quality of the liquid crystal display panel. SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION [0008] An object of the present invention is to provide a liquid crystal display panel and a liquid crystal display device containing the same, which can solve the problem of disclinations of liquid crystal molecules to improve the display quality of the liquid crystal display panel and the device containing the same. [0009] Another object of the present invention is to provide a method for manufacturing the aforementioned liquid crystal display panel. [0010] To achieve the object, an aspect of the present invention is to provide a liquid crystal display panel, comprising: a first substrate with a pixel electrode, a data line, and a scan line formed thereon; a second substrate opposite to the first substrate; a first alignment layer disposed on the first substrate, the pixel electrode, the data line and the scan line; and a liquid crystal layer disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate. Herein, the first alignment layer disposed on the pixel electrode has a first thickness, the first alignment layer disposed on at least one of the scan line and the data line has a second thickness, and the first thickness is greater than the second thickness. [0011] In general, the thickness of the data line and/or the scan line of the liquid crystal display panel is larger than that of the pixel electrode. In the liquid crystal display panel of the present invention, the first thickness of the first alignment layer on the pixel electrode is designed to be larger than the thickness thereof on the data line and/or the scan line. Therefore, the altitude (or height) difference of the surface of the first alignment layer on the pixel electrode and the data line and/or the scan line can be minimized, so the problem of non-uniform rubbing or monomer aggregation of the first alignment layer can be prevented to improve the display quality of the liquid crystal display panel. [0012] In addition, the present invention further provides a method for manufacturing the aforementioned liquid crystal display panel, comprising: providing a first substrate and a second substrate, wherein a pixel electrode, a data line and a scan line are disposed on the first substrate, and the second substrate is opposite to the first substrate; forming a first alignment layer disposed on the first substrate, the data line, the scan line and the pixel electrode, wherein the first alignment layer disposed on the pixel electrode has a first thickness, the first alignment layer disposed on at least one of the scan line and the data line has a second thickness, and the first thickness is greater than the second thickness; and injecting a liquid crystal layer between the first substrate and the second substrate. [0013] In the method of the present invention, the alignment layer can be patterned to have different thickness through any conventional patterning manner used in the art. For example, a printing plate such as an APR plate with specific microstructures can be used to prepare the patterned alignment layer through directly printing; an alignment layer with an uniform thickness is firstly formed and then a photolithography is performed thereon to form a patterned alignment layer; or an alignment layer with an uniform thickness is firstly formed, imprinted before curing, and then cured to form a patterned alignment layer. However, the manner used to prepare the patterned alignment layer of the present invention is not limited to the aforementioned manners. [0014] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, the problem of the disclinations of liquid crystal molecules can be solved, as long as the first thickness (T 1 ) of the first alignment layer on the pixel electrode is larger than the second thickness (T 2 ) thereof on the data line and/or the scan line. Preferably, a ratio of the first thickness to the second thickness (T 1 /T 2 ) is in a range from 1 to 10 (1≦T 1 /T 2 ≦10). More preferably, this ratio is in a range from 1 to 5 (1≦T 1 /T 2 ≦5). Most preferably, this ratio is in a range from 2 to 4 (2≦T 1 /T 2 ≦4). However, this ratio can be adjusted according to the distances between the surface of the first substrate and the pixel electrode, the data line as well as the scan line, and is not limited to the aforementioned range. [0015] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, a color filter unit and a black matrix may be further disposed on the second substrate. Additionally, a second alignment layer can be further disposed on the color filter unit and the black matrix. Herein, the second alignment layer on the color filter unit has a fourth thickness, the second alignment layer on the black matrix has a fifth thickness, and the fourth thickness is thinner than the fifth thickness. In some aspects, the thickness of the second alignment layer on parts of the color filter unit overlapping with the black matrix is thinner than that on the other parts of the color filter unit which does not overlap therewith. [0016] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, at least one spacer may be disposed on the first substrate or the second substrate, and preferably on the second substrate. When the first substrate and the second substrate are assembled with each other, the spacer therebetween can provide a predetermined space for the injection of liquid crystal molecules. When the spacer is disposed on the first substrate, the first alignment layer covers the spacer and has a third thickness, which is thinner than the first thickness and the second thickness. A more preferable case is that the spacer is disposed on the second substrate, and the second alignment layer covers the spacer and has a third thickness, which is less than the fourth thickness and the fifth thickness of the second alignment layer. Meanwhile, the third thickness is also less than the first thickness and the second thickness. In some cases, the third thickness of the alignment layer on the spacer is close to 0 nm; and in other word, the third thickness thereof is hardly to be detected. [0017] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, a thin film transistor unit may be further disposed on the first substrate. Herein, the thin film transistor unit comprises: a gate electrode, an insulating layer, a semiconductor layer, a source electrode and a drain electrode, wherein the insulating layer covers the gate electrode, the semiconductor layer is disposed on the insulating layer, the source electrode and the drain electrode are disposed on the semiconductor layer and separated in a predetermined distance to form a channel region. In addition, the first alignment layer is disposed on the thin film transistor unit, and has a sixth thickness on the source electrode and the drain electrode and a seventh thickness in the channel region, and the sixth thickness is thinner than the seventh thickness. [0018] Furthermore, in the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, a protection layer is further disposed on the first substrate to cover the data line, the scan line and the thin film transistor unit. The protection layer has an opening to expose the drain electrode of the thin film transistor unit, and the pixel electrode is disposed on the protection layer and extends into the opening to electrically connect with the drain electrode. The first alignment layer in the opening has an eighth thickness, and the sixth thickness of the first alignment layer on the drain electrode (more specifically, on the pixel electrode above the drain electrode) is thinner than the eighth thickness thereof. [0019] In addition, in the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, the first alignment layer has the first thickness outside the region disposed with the thin film transistor unit (more specifically, the region without the thin film transistor unit formed thereon but disposed with the pixel electrode), which is larger than the sixth thickness. [0020] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, the material for the alignment layer (including the first alignment layer and the second alignment layer) is not particularly limited, and can be any material generally used in the art, such as polyimide (PI), polyvinylcinnamate (PVCN), and polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA); but the present invention is not limited thereto. Preferably, the material for the alignment layer of the present invention is PI. [0021] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, not only the thickness of the alignment layer (including the first alignment layer and the second alignment layer) can be differed, but also at least one protrusion, at least one hump or a combination thereof can further be formed on the surface of the alignment layer. Preferably, the first substrate comprises a display region and a non-display region, and the aforementioned protrusion and hump are disposed on the first alignment layer corresponding to the non-display region of the first substrate. In addition, the second substrate may also comprise a display region and a non-display region, which respectively correspond to the display region and the non-display region of the first substrate; and the aforementioned protrusion and hump are also disposed on the second alignment layer corresponding to the non-display region of the second substrate. Preferably, the aforementioned protrusion and hump are disposed on a periphery region of the first alignment layer and/or the second alignment layer. The disposition of the protrusion and the hump can increase the pressure that the alignment layer applies to the substrate (including the first substrate and the second substrate) to increase the adhesion between the alignment layer and the substrate. Additionally, the disposition thereof can also solve the problem of the overflow of the material for preparing the alignment layer and the shrink of the alignment layer during the curing process, and therefore the shift of the alignment layer can be inhibited. [0022] Herein, in both the first alignment layer and the second alignment layer, a material of the alignment layer is the same as that of the protrusion and/or the hump. In addition, the protrusion or the hump is integrated with the alignment layer. In the present invention, an APR plate or a photo mask having specific structures corresponding to the protrusion and/or the hump can be used to form the alignment layer and the protrusion and/or the hump at the same time or separately. Herein, the term “protrusion” means a protruding unit having a height of more than 30 nm from the top thereof to the surface of the alignment layer; and the term “hump” means that having a height of less than 30 nm. In addition, the protrusion of the present invention has an uneven surface or a ridge-like structure. [0023] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, the viscosity of the material of the alignment layer is related to the polymerization degrees or the types of the used polymer. For example, the material of the alignment layer has higher viscosity as the polymerization degree of the used polymer increased. Hence, in one embodiment of the present invention, a material having high viscosity such as a polymer having high molecular weight can be used to form the alignment layer. In this case, at least one protrusion, at least one hump, or a combination thereof can be formed on the surface of the alignment layer; and preferably, both the protrusion and the hump are formed thereon. In addition, when the protrusion is formed on the surface of the alignment layer, a ratio of a height of the protrusion (more specifically, which is the height from the top of the protrusion to the surface of the alignment layer) to a thickness of the first alignment layer adjacent to the protrusion is in a range from 2 to 10. In another aspect of the present invention, a material having low viscosity such as a polymer having small molecular weight can be used to form the alignment layer. In this case, humps are formed on the surface of the alignment layer; and additionally an edge of the alignment may further have a wave configuration. Herein, the term “wave configuration” may include the arc shape, the zigzag shape, the curve shape or a combination thereof. [0024] In the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, the alignment layer (including the first alignment layer and the second alignment layer) may selectively comprise plural particles, wherein the particles in the non-display region is larger than those in the display region. Herein, the term “particle” includes nucleuses, crystals, grains or aggregations, as long as significant particles formed in the alignment layer are belonged to the definition of the particle of the present invention. Especially, in some aspects of the present invention, not only the APR plate or the photo mask with specific microstructure can be used to form the hump, but also the hump may be formed due to the aggregation of the plural particles. [0025] In addition, in the liquid crystal display panel and the method for manufacturing the same of the present invention, a sealant is used to assemble the first substrate and the second substrate. Hence, the liquid crystal display panel of the present invention may further comprise a sealant disposed between the first substrate and the second substrate, and selectively covering parts of the alignment layer. More specifically, the sealant selectively covers the periphery region of the alignment layer. When the protrusion and/or the hump are formed on the alignment layer, the sealant preferably covers parts of the protrusion and/or the hump. The disposition of the protrusion and/or the hump can increase the contact area between the sealant and the alignment layer, and therefore the peeling problem of the sealant from the alignment layer can be improved. [0026] Furthermore, the present invention further provides a liquid crystal display device, which comprises: a backlight module; and the aforementioned liquid crystal display panel disposed on the backlight module. [0027] Other objects, advantages, and novel features of the invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS [0028] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a liquid crystal panel according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0029] FIG. 2 is a perspective view showing a thin film transistor substrate according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0030] FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view showing a thin film transistor substrate according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0031] FIGS. 4A-4B are enlarged cross-sectional views showing parts of a thin film transistor substrate according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0032] FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view showing a color filter substrate according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0033] FIG. 6 is a perspective view showing a first alignment layer on a thin film transistor substrate according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0034] FIGS. 7A-7D are cross-sectional views showing a first alignment layer in a non-display region according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0035] FIGS. 8A-8C are cross-sectional views showing a first alignment layer in a non-display region according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0036] FIG. 9A is a perspective view showing a first alignment layer and a sealant according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0037] FIG. 9B is a perspective view showing a first alignment layer and a sealant according to another preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0038] FIG. 10 is a perspective view showing a first alignment layer according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention; [0039] FIG. 11 is a perspective vies showing a first alignment layer on a thin film transistor substrate according to another preferred embodiment of the present invention; and [0040] FIG. 12 is a perspective view showing a liquid crystal display device of the present invention. DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT [0041] The present invention has been described in an illustrative manner, and it is to be understood that the terminology used is intended to be in the nature of description rather than of limitation. Many modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. Therefore, it is to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims, the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described. [0042] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a liquid crystal panel according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention. The liquid crystal display panel of the present embodiment comprises: a thin film transistor (TFT) substrate 1 , a color filter (CF) substrate 2 , plural spacers 3 , a liquid crystal layer 4 and a sealant 5 . The TFT substrate 1 and the CF substrate 2 are opposite to each other, the spacers 3 and the liquid crystal layer 4 are disposed between the TFT substrate 1 and the CF substrate 2 , and the TFT substrate 1 and the CF substrate 2 are assembled to each other with the sealant 5 . The detail units disposed on the TFT substrate 1 and the CF substrate 2 are not shown in FIG. 1 . Hereinafter, the units disposed on the TFT substrate 1 and the CF substrate 2 and the manufacturing process thereof are described below. [0043] FIG. 2 is a perspective view showing a TFT substrate of the liquid crystal display panel of the present embodiment; and FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view showing the TFT substrate and a structure formed thereon according to the A-A′ section line of FIG. 2 . The TFT substrate of the present embodiment comprises: a first substrate 11 with scan lines 12 , data lines 13 , a thin film transistor (TFT) unit 14 , a pixel electrode 15 , and a capacitor electrode 17 formed thereon. Herein, a pixel unit is defined with two adjacent scan lines 12 and two adjacent data lines 13 , which comprises a TFT unit 14 , a pixel electrode 15 , and a capacitor electrode 17 , and the pixel electrode 15 is disposed between two adjacent scan lines 12 and two adjacent data lines 13 . Herein, the scan lines 12 , the data lines 13 and the capacitor electrode 17 can be made of any conductive material generally used in the art, such as metal, alloy, metal oxide, metal oxinitride, or other electrode material used in the art; and preferably metal. [0044] Next, as shown in FIG. 3 , the TFT substrate of the present embodiment comprises: a first substrate 11 , a data line 13 , a scan line (not shown in the figure) and a TFT unit 14 , wherein the data line 13 , the scan line (not shown in the figure) and the TFT unit 14 are disposed on the first substrate 11 . The TFT unit 14 comprises: a gate electrode 141 disposed on the first substrate 11 ; an insulating layer 142 (also called as a gate insulating layer) covering the gate electrode 141 and the first substrate 11 ; a semiconductor layer 143 disposed on the insulating layer 142 ; and a source electrode 1441 and a drain electrode 1442 disposed on the semiconductor layer 143 and separated in a predetermined distance to form a channel region 1443 . Herein, the insulating layer 142 also covers the data line 13 and the scan line (not shown in the figure). In the present embodiment, the TFT unit 14 can be manufactured by the conventional process generally used in the art, so the process thereof is not shown herein. In addition, the first substrate 11 can be any substrate generally used in the art, such as a glass substrate, a plastic substrate, a silicon substrate and a ceramic substrate. Furthermore, the material for the gate electrode 141 can be any conductive material generally used in the art, such as metal, alloy, metal oxide, metal oxinitride, or other electrode material used in the art; and preferably metal. However, the present invention is not limited thereto. The material for the insulating layer 142 can be any insulating material generally used in the art, such as SiN; the material for the semiconductor layer 143 can be any semiconductor material generally used in the art comprising amorphous silicon, polysilicon, organic materials such as P13, DH4T and pentacene; but the present invention is not limited thereto. [0045] As shown in FIG. 3 , after the data line 13 , the scan line (not shown in the figure) and the TFT unit 14 are formed, a protection layer 145 is formed to cover the data line 13 , the scan line (not shown in the figure) and the TFT unit 14 . Herein, an opening 1451 is formed in the protection layer 145 to expose the drain electrode 1442 . Then, a pixel electrode 15 is disposed on the protection layer 145 and extends into the opening 1451 to electrically connect with the drain electrode 1442 . Herein, the material for the protection layer 145 can be any material generally used as the passivation material of the art, such as SiOx. In addition, the pixel electrode 15 can be a patterned electrode generally used in the art, such as a dendrite-like electrode or a zigzag electrode; and the material thereof can be any transparent conductive material generally used in the art, such as transparent conductive oxide comprising ITO or IZO. [0046] Finally, as shown in FIG. 3 , the protection layer 145 and the pixel electrode 15 are coated with a photo alignment monomer. After the photo alignment monomer is polymerized and cured, a first alignment layer 16 is formed. In the present embodiment, the first alignment layer 16 does not have a uniform thickness, and the thickness thereof is adjusted according to the altitude (or height) of the units below the first alignment layer 16 . Hence, the altitude difference of the upper surface of the first alignment layer 16 can be minimized. Herein, a printing plate such as an APR plate with specific microstructures can be used to prepare the patterned alignment layer through directly printing; an alignment layer with an uniform thickness is firstly formed and then a photolithography is performed thereon to form a patterned alignment layer; or an alignment layer with an uniform thickness is firstly formed, imprinted to have different thickness before curing, and then cured to form a patterned alignment layer. However, the manner used to prepare the patterned alignment layer of the present invention is not limited to the aforementioned manners. After the aforementioned process, the TFT substrate of the present embodiment is completed. Hereinafter, the design of the first alignment layer 16 is described in detail. [0047] FIG. 4A is an enlarged cross-sectional view showing parts of the TFT substrate of the present embodiment. Herein, the first alignment layer 16 on the pixel electrode 15 has a first thickness T 1 , that on the data line 13 has a second thickness T 2 , and the first thickness T 1 is larger than the second thickness T 2 . Preferably, a ratio of the first thickness T 1 to the second thickness T 2 (T 1 /T 2 ) is in a range from 1 to 10 (1≦T 1 /T 2 ≦10). More preferably, this ratio is in a range from 1 to 5 (1≦T 1 /T 2 ≦5). Most preferably, this ratio is in a range from 2 to 4 (2≦T 1 /T 2 ≦4). In the present embodiment, the first thickness T 1 can be in a range from 0.1 μm to 0.2 μm, and the second thickness T 2 can be in a range from 0.01 μm to 0.08 μm. However, the thickness of the first alignment layer 16 is not limited to the aforementioned range, as long as the thickness of the first alignment layer 16 is reduced as the altitude of the units below the first alignment layer 16 increased, and therefore the purpose of reducing the altitude difference of the upper surface of the first alignment layer 16 can be achieved. Herein, only the region containing the data line are exemplified, but the first alignment layer corresponding to the region containing the scan line can have the similar thickness design to that containing the data line. [0048] In addition, FIG. 4B is an enlarged cross-sectional view showing the region disposed with the thin film transistor unit of the TFT substrate of the present embodiment. Herein, the first alignment layer 16 has a sixth thickness T 6 on the source electrode 1441 and the drain electrode 1442 , and a seventh thickness T 7 in the channel region 1443 , and the sixth thickness T 6 is thinner than the seventh thickness T 7 . In addition, the first alignment layer 16 has an eighth thickness T 8 in the opening 1451 , and the sixth thickness T 6 of the first alignment layer 16 on the drain electrode 1442 is thinner than the eighth thickness T 8 thereof. Furthermore, the first alignment layer 16 has the first thickness T 1 outside the region disposed with the thin film transistor unit 14 (more specifically, the region without the thin film transistor unit 14 formed thereon but disposed with the pixel electrode 15 ), which is larger than the sixth thickness T 6 . [0049] As shown in FIGS. 4A and 4B , the thickness of the first alignment layer 16 is designed to be decreased as the altitude of the units below the first alignment layer 16 increased. Hence, the altitude difference of the upper surface of the first alignment layer 16 can be minimized. Therefore, the problem of non-uniform rubbing or monomer aggregation of the first alignment layer 16 can be prevented to improve the display quality of the liquid crystal display panel. [0050] Next, FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view showing the CF substrate of the present embodiment. The CF substrate comprises: a second substrate 21 , a color filter unit 22 and a black matrix 23 . Herein, the color filter unit 22 and the black matrix 23 are disposed on the second substrate 21 , and the black matrix 23 is disposed between two adjacent color filter units 22 . Next, a protection layer 24 , a common electrode layer 25 and a second alignment layer 26 are sequentially formed on the color filter unit 22 and the black matrix 23 to complete the CF substrate of the present embodiment. Herein, the material for the protection layer 24 can be the same as that for the protection layer 145 shown in FIG. 3 , so are not described in detail. In addition, the common electrode layer 25 of the present embodiment can be a planar electrode layer generally used in the art, and the material thereof can be any transparent conductive material generally used in the art, such as transparent conductive oxide comprising ITO or IZO. In addition, the second alignment layer 26 can be formed by the same process for manufacturing the first alignment layer, so the process for manufacturing the same are not illustrated herein. It should be noted that the second alignment layer 26 of the present embodiment may also have different thickness, which is adjusted according to the heights of the units below the second alignment layer 26 ; and therefore, the altitude difference of the upper surface of the second alignment layer 26 can be minimized. Hereinafter, the design of the thickness of the second alignment layer 26 is described in detail below. [0051] As shown in FIG. 5 , the second alignment layer 26 on the color filter unit 22 has a fourth thickness T 4 , that on the black matrix 23 has a fifth thickness T 5 , and the fourth thickness T 4 is thinner than the fifth thickness T 5 . Herein, the fourth thickness T 4 can be in a range from 0.01 μm to 0.08 μm, and the fifth thickness T 5 can be in a range from 0.1 μm to 0.2 μm. However, the present invention is not limited to the aforementioned range, as long as the thickness of the second alignment layer 26 is reduced as the units below the second alignment layer 26 increased; and therefore the purpose of minimizing the altitude difference of the upper surface of the second alignment layer 26 can be achieved. In addition, the color filter unit 22 covers parts of the black matrix 23 . Herein, the thickness T 9 of the second alignment layer 26 on parts of the color filter unit 22 overlapping with the black matrix 23 is thinner than that (i.e. the fourth thickness T 4 ) on the other parts of the color filter unit 22 which does not overlap with the black matrix 23 . [0052] In addition, as shown in FIG. 5 , the liquid crystal display panel of the present embodiment further comprises at least one spacer 3 disposed between the TFT substrate 1 and the CF substrate 2 (as shown in FIG. 1 ). More specifically, the spacer 3 is disposed on the second substrate 21 and corresponds to the black matrix 23 ; and the second alignment layer 26 covers the spacer 3 . Herein, the second alignment layer 26 on the spacer has a third thickness T 3 , which is thinner than the fourth thickness T 4 and the fifth thickness T 5 . When the thickness of the second alignment layer 26 is compared with that of the first alignment layer 16 on the first substrate (as shown in FIG. 3 ), the third thickness T 3 is thinner than the first thickness T 1 of the first alignment layer 16 on the pixel electrode 15 and the second thickness T 2 thereof on the data line 13 . In some embodiments, the third thickness T 3 of the second alignment layer 26 on the spacer 3 is very thin, and almost close to 0 nm; and in other word, the third thickness thereof is hardly to be detected, even with a scanning electron microscope (SEM). [0053] In the present embodiment, the material for the alignment layer (including the first alignment layer 16 and the second alignment layer 26 ) is not particularly limited, and can be any material generally used in the art, such as polyimide (PI), polyvinylcinnamate (PVCN) and polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA). However, the material thereof is not limited thereto. Preferably, the material for the alignment layer of the present embodiment is PI having high viscosity. [0054] As shown in FIG. 1 , after the TFT substrate 1 and the CF substrate 2 are prepared, these two substrates are assembled and sealed with a sealant 5 , and then liquid crystal molecules are injected therein to form a liquid crystal layer 4 , to complete the liquid crystal display panel of the present embodiment. In order to improve the adhesion between the sealant 5 and the first alignment layer 16 as well as the second alignment layer 26 (as shown in FIG. 1 , FIG. 3 and FIG. 5 ), the peripheries of the first alignment layer 16 and the second alignment layer 26 are designed to have microstructures. Hereinafter, the microstructures of the peripheries of the first alignment layer 16 and the second alignment layer 26 are described in detail, wherein the peripheries of the first alignment layer 16 and the second alignment layer 26 can have identical or different microstructures. Herein, only the structure of the first alignment layer 16 is exemplified, and that of the second alignment layer 26 are not described below. [0055] FIG. 6 is a perspective view showing a first alignment layer on a TFT substrate in the liquid crystal display panel of the present embodiment. As shown in FIG. 6 , in the liquid crystal display panel of the present embodiment, the first alignment layer 16 is disposed on the TFT substrate 1 , and a protrusion 161 and plural humps 162 are further disposed on the periphery P of the first alignment layer 16 . If the TFT substrate 1 is defined to have a display region D and a non-display region N, the protrusion 161 and the humps 162 are disposed on the non-display region N of the TFT substrate 1 . In the present embodiment, the material of the first alignment layer 16 is the same as those of the protrusion 161 and the humps 162 , and the protrusion 161 and the humps 162 are integrated with the first alignment layer 16 . Herein, an APR plate or a photo mask having patterns corresponding to the first alignment layer 16 and the protrusion 161 can be used to form the first alignment layer 16 and the protrusion 161 at the same time; or an APR plate or a photo mask having patterns corresponding to the first alignment layer 16 , the protrusion 161 and the humps 162 can be used to form the first alignment layer 16 , the protrusion 161 and the humps 162 at the same time. However, in other embodiment, the humps 162 may not be formed by using an APR plate or a photo mask having patterns corresponding to the humps 162 , and can be spontaneously formed by the particles (including nucleuses, crystals, grains or aggregations) generated during the polymerization of the material for the alignment layer. [0056] FIGS. 7A-7D are cross-sectional views showing a first alignment layer in a non-display region N according to the B-B′ section line of FIG. 6 . As shown in FIG. 7A , a ratio of a height H 1 of the protrusion 161 (i.e. the distance between the top of the protrusion 161 to a surface 163 of the first alignment layer 16 ) to a thickness T of the first alignment layer 16 adjacent to the protrusion 161 is in a range from 2 to 10. Herein, the height H 1 can be in a range from 150 nm to 300 nm, and the thickness T can be in a range from 10 nm to 100 nm. However, the present invention is not limited to the aforementioned range, as long as the protrusion 161 has a specific altitude relative to the first alignment layer 16 to increase the pressure that the periphery of the alignment layer applies to the substrate to improve the adhesion between the alignment layer and the substrate. Additionally, the disposition thereof can also solve the problem of the overflow of the material for preparing the alignment layer and the shrink of the alignment layer during the curing process, and therefore the shift of the alignment layer can be inhibited. In addition, plural humps 162 are further disposed besides the protrusion 161 of the first alignment layer 16 , and the height H 2 thereof can be in a range from 5 nm to 30 nm. However, the present invention is not limited thereto. Furthermore, the protrusion 161 shown in FIG. 7A has a side vertical to the surface 163 of the first alignment layer 16 . In other embodiment, both the two sides of the protrusion 161 may be inclined planes (as shown in FIG. 7B ); the protrusion 16 is in an arc shape (as shown in FIG. 7C ); or one side of the protrusion 161 is vertical to the surface 163 of the first alignment layer 16 , and the other side thereof is an inclined plane (as shown in FIG. 7D ). However, the present invention is not limited thereto. In addition, all the protrusions 161 shown in FIGS. 7A-7D have an even surface, but the protrusions 161 may have an uneven surface or a ridge-like structure in some embodiments. [0057] FIGS. 8A-8C are cross-sectional views showing a first alignment layer in a non-display region N according to the C-C′ section line of FIG. 6 . In general, circuits are formed in the non-display region N of the liquid crystal display panel, and the first alignment layer 16 may further be disposed on the circuits 6 therein. [0058] After the liquid crystal display panel of the present embodiment is sealed with a sealant 5 , the relative position between the protrusions 161 of the first alignment layer 16 and the sealant 5 can be shown in FIG. 9A . The sealant 5 covers the protrusions 161 to increase the contacting area between the sealant 5 and the first alignment layer 16 , and therefore the peeling between the sealant 5 and the first alignment layer 16 can be prevented. In addition, as shown in FIG. 9A , the edge of the first substrate 11 is protruded from the sealant 5 . [0059] However, in another embodiment of the present invention, the edge of the first substrate 11 is substantially aligned with the edge of the sealant 5 , as shown in FIG. 9B . In addition, in further another embodiment of the present invention, the material for preparing the alignment layer is PI with low viscosity. Therefore, the protrusion 161 shown in FIG. 9A cannot be formed, but the periphery of the first alignment layer 16 is configured in a curve structure, such as a wave structure, as shown in FIG. 11 . [0060] In both the first alignment layer 16 with the protrusion 161 and the humps 162 formed thereon as shown in FIG. 6 and that with humps 162 formed thereon and having a wave configuration as shown in FIG. 11 , plural particles 164 may be formed in the first alignment layer 16 . These particles 164 can be nucleuses, crystals, grains or aggregations generated during the curing process, as shown in FIG. 10 . In particular, the size of the particles 164 in the non-display region N is larger than that in the display region D. In addition, in other embodiment, the particles 164 are only present in the non-display region N but not in the display region D; or there are no particles formed in the first alignment layer 16 . [0061] It should be noted that only the first alignment layer 16 on the first substrate 11 is exemplified in FIG. 6 to FIG. 10 . However, a person skilled in the art can understand that other units (such as the TFT unit) between the first substrate 11 and the first alignment layer 16 are not shown herein. [0062] Moreover, the liquid crystal display panels of the aforementioned embodiments can further be applied to a liquid crystal display device 7 , as shown in FIG. 12 . Herein, the liquid crystal display device 7 comprises: a backlight module (not shown in the figure); and the aforementioned liquid crystal display panel disposed on the backlight module (not shown in the figure). Herein, only the liquid crystal display device is exemplified, other display devices such as a mobile phone, a notebook, a camera, a video camera, a music player, a navigation system, or a television can also be equipped with the liquid crystal display panels of the aforementioned embodiments. [0063] Although the present invention has been explained in relation to its preferred embodiment, it is to be understood that many other possible modifications and variations can be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as hereinafter claimed.

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    US-9817290-B2November 14, 2017Shenzhen China Star Optoelectronics Technology Co., Ltd, Wuhan China Star Optoelectronics Technology Co., LtdTFT substrate and display device