Hybrid LEDFriday 17th October 2014
LED lighting is the choice for most modern installations and households. The light is a little cold, but they last longer than incandescents and are far more energy efficient. That seems to make the choice to change a no-brainer, they are more expensive but that is offset by their energy saving and longevity - but there is a problem for the future of LEDs.
The key materials for most LED lighting rare earth elements that are increasingly in-demand for use in almost all other high-tech devices, thus adding to the cost of the technology. This means that costs of LEDs are likely to rise, slowing demand.
The good news is that scientists have now designed new materials for making household LED bulbs without using these ingredients. Professor Jing Li and a team of scientists from New Jersey's Rutgers University set out to solve the issues of material sources and pricing.
They have developed an inorganic–organic hybrid phosphor materials which are totally free of rare-earth metals. They can be synthesized by a simple, low-cost solution process that is easily scalable. They are made out of copper iodide, which is an abundant compound.
They have also tuned them to glow a warm white shade or various other colors using a low-cost solution process. Combining these features, this material class shows significant promise for use in general lighting applications.
The future then could be good for LED lighting, and energy saving, with the hybrid phosphor materials - better light, cheaper and readily available materials - another win-win.
Source: American Chemical Society.
Friday 17th October 2014