Oko Institute Recommends Against Cadmium Exemption in LED Displays

by Source Intelligence

on June 13, 2016


Oko Institute, the advisory organization to the EU on RoHS exemptions, released a report advising against granting an exemption for the usage of cadmium quantum dot (CdQD) technology in LED displays.

The report was drafted in response to previously submitted exemption requests for CdQD. In December 2012, a request was submitted to extend exemption 39, and in May 2013 a request for a new exemption was submitted. The report summarizes a reevaluation of the exemption submissions, prompted by the European Parliament’s request.


Is Exemption for CdQD Necessary?


The evaluation concluded that replacements for CdQD technology exist; CdSe QD was identified as the ideal replacement. It was shown to increase energy savings as well as the color gamut for LED displays. The Oko Institute also found that an exemption for CdQD would not be necessary for all LED displays, and requests for specific applications of CdQD in LED displays could still be submitted.

Exemptions are provided if at least one of the following standards are met, as defined by RoHS Article 5(1)(a):

  • Elimination or substitution of the components is not practical or possible
  • The negative health and environmental impacts of substitution outweigh the benefits
  • The reliability of the substitute is uncertain

The list of valid RoHS exemptions is always in flux. Expiration dates are defined in the RoHS directive, but companies can request to extend sunset dates and apply for new exemptions.  Products initially compliant under an exemption can become non-compliant once the exemption expires, or may stay compliant if a request to extend the sunset date is approved. It is crucial for companies to know the latest updates to RoHS exemptions in order to stay RoHS compliant.

Tracking RoHS exemptions and constantly re-engaging the supply chain to keep up is a very time intensive effort. To learn more about how to manage fluctuating RoHS exemptions and track the impacts on your products, click here.


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