InZiv raises $10M; Tower president joins the board

Jerusalem-based InZiv, developer of nanometric testing and inspection system for flat panel displays, has completed a raise of $10M in a Series A1 round led by BlueRed Partners, a Singapore based venture capital fund, together with the Israeli OurCrowd and some other Asian investors. The company has also announced that Itzhak Edrei, President Emeritus of Tower Semiconductor, will be joining the Board of Directors. 

InZiv was founded in 2018 by CEO David Lewis and CTO Rimma Dechter, both earned their PhD in Applied Physics at Hebrew University with specialization in optical nanometric. The company has developed verification and quality control system based on optical and metrological technology in nano scale. This technology is intended to be used by flat panel display (FPD) manufacturers, such the ones used in smarthphones, and AR smart glasses.    

The significant improvement in resolution and sharpness of advanced displays currently in the market, such as MicroLED, OLED and QLED is achieved due to the pixels minimization, which are the smallest controllable elements of a picture represented on the screen. As pixels are smaller, more of them can be condensed in the screen, bringing much better quality to the picture displayed. In past generations’ screens, pixels’ size was hundreds of microns, while today we see screens with pixel size minimized to few microns only. This minimization trend, initiated by the smartphones industry, is expected to get boost by the AR/VR glasses industry, since in this area highest resolution is required due to the near-eye concept.

See within the pixel itself

However – as pixels are shrinking, they are more sensitive to defects in the production process. A grain of dust in the production line or microscopic discoloration may be the cause to a significant decrease in the quality of the finished product. This situation poses a complicated challenge to quality testing of the screens during production. Current testing equipment, which is based on standard microscopic optics, may detect defects at 1 micron (1000 nanometer) scale, something that highly limit these system’s capabilities to detect defects at the pixel level.

This technological flaw is ultimately reflected in a lower yield for the manufacturer, who has to discard the damaged screens and higher costs for the consumer. In an interview to Techtime at early 2019, right after the first fund raising, CEO and co-founder David Lewis talked about the current challenge in the market: “Current inspection equipment is fairly limited in the level of optical information it produces, making it difficult to locate defects and  comprehend the origin of the fault. Our inspection system, based on optical nanometric and precise metrological  implementations, makes it possible to achieve a 100 nanometer resolution. Since the resolution is higher, the manufacturer is capable of identifying defects in the early production phases and to detect the production flaw caused these defects. In more advanced screens, some of the defects are originated from within the pixel itself, something our system can detect”.