Get Ready for the LED Revolution!

07 January 2008

Employing Light Emitting Diode technology, the bulbs would use less electricity than the low energy versions that families are currently being urged to invest in.

LED lights, which are used in electrical gadgets such as mobile phones and computers, have been judged unsuitable to light homes until now because they are not bright enough to illuminate whole rooms.

But researchers believe they have found a way of making the devices much brighter without using any more power.

Faiz Rahman, who is leading the project at the University of Glasgow, said: "By making microscopic holes on the surface of the LEDs it is possible to extract more light, thus increasing the brightness of the lights without increasing the energy consumption.

"As yet, LEDs have not been introduced as the standard lighting in homes because the process of making the holes is very time-consuming and expensive.

"However, we believe we have found a way of imprinting the holes into billions of LEDs at a far greater speed but at a much lower cost."

The research team has been using a technique called nano-imprint lithography to etch microscopicholes on to the LEDs, allowing more of their light to escape.

The project is being developed in conjunction with the Institute of Photonics and the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow.

"LEDs not only use less power than current energy efficient light bulbs but they are much smaller and can last years without needing to be replaced," added Dr Rahman.

"This means the days of the humble light bulb could soon be over."

The researchers made use of nano technology --precision engineering of substances at molecular and atomic level. The techniques are increasingly being used in clothing, electronics and manufacturing as well as in health and cosmetics


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