Monsanto MAN1 & MAN1A  
Written by Accutron on 2017-02-09  

Devices included in this entry:

Monsanto MAN1 (14-pin clear epoxy DIP; pictured in thumbnail)
Monsanto MAN1A (14-pin red epoxy DIP)

The MAN1 is generally considered to be the world's first production seven-segment LED display. Following the introduction of the MAN1, the now-familiar seven-segment LED rapidly took over the world, wiping out the demand for Nixie tubes, Minitrons, Panaplex displays, and many other display technologies in a single blow. Each segment of the MAN-1 is made up of two dies, which each contain four diode elements. With the inclusion of a decimal point, the entire display contains 57 separate light emitting sectors, which is quite a lot compared to modern displays which typically only use a single diode for each segment, or even a single etched die for each character. The MAN1's first generation diode technology results in a very dim display, but the virtual immortality of LED technology was a drastic improvement over the incandescent Minitron displays and complex gas-filled devices with which it was designed to compete.

Soon after the release of the MAN1, Monsanto introduced a modified version, the MAN1A. The MAN1A is identical in functionality and basic construction to a standard MAN-1, but has a dark red epoxy case which does a great deal to hide the display's ugly internal construction.

Monsanto MAN1 numeric LED display under normal operation.

Monsanto MAN1A numeric LED display.

This article is part of the [Integrated Optoelectronics] exhibit.

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