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Mitsubishi makes world's 1st laser-based rear projection TV

(Kyodo News International (Tokyo) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Feb. 15--OSAKA -- Mitsubishi Electric Corp. said Wednesday it has developed what it says is the world's first rear projection television that uses a laser as its light source instead of a mercury lamp as with current rear projection TVs.

The laser-based rear projection TV provides a higher picture quality than liquid crystal display and plasma display panel televisions, according to the home electronics equipment maker.

Mitsubishi Electric President Tamotsu Nomakuchi told a news conference in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture, "We want to release the product on the market in two years" by creating a mass-production line capable of being run on a commercial basis.

With Mitsubishi's existing lineup of rear projection TVs, light from a mercury lamp -- installed in the rear section -- is split up into red, blue and green to create images on the front screen.

In the new rear projection TV, light from a semiconductor laser is divided into red, blue and green, making it possible to represent images with a color variety 1.8 times greater than that of LCD TVs and thereby improving image quality.

In addition, the depth of the new TV was limited to 26 centimeters -- the same as that of the company's existing mercury lamp-based rear projection TVs.

The new product has eliminated the problem of existing rear projection TVs being unable to project images of a comparable quality to those of LCD and plasma display TVs, the company said.

Nonetheless, the company said it has to finish some remaining technological tasks to minimize the size of the power-source unit of the new TV and manufacture the product at lower cost before it can release it on a commercial basis.

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