Nobel Prize winners put LEDs in the spotlight

blue LEDThree scientists earned this year’s Nobel Prize in Physics for inventing the blue light-emitting diode (LED)–an essential part of creating white light from LED lamps.

Red and green LEDs had been around since the 1960s, but blue LEDs had been a challenge for scientists for years. In the 1990s, however, Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano, and Shuji Nakamura broke through that barrier and developed the first blue diodes, which are essential to the mix that produces white lighting.

Now, white LED light has become pervasive in residential and commercial settings, offering a more energy-efficient alternative to CFLs or traditional incandescent bulbs.

At CUB, we’ve been applauding the use of LEDs for years.  LEDs last about 25 times longer than traditional bulbs and use less energy for the same level of brightness.  Not only are they good for the environment, they can save big bucks over the life span of a bulb.

And the benefits go even further.

“The LED lamp holds great promise for increasing the quality of life for over 1.5 billion people around the world who lack access to electricity grids,” the Nobel committee said. “Due to low power requirements, it can be powered by cheap local solar power.”

The three scientists will split the $1.1 million prize, which will be awarded December 10 in Stockholm.

Want more information on LEDs?  Check out CUB’s infographic.

 

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One Response to Nobel Prize winners put LEDs in the spotlight

  1. Ken Lundgren says:

    LED bulbs are great, but you need to be careful where you use them. http://tinyurl.com/l5tkzkj
    … totally unlike incandescent and substantially unlike a CFL, reliability and life expectancy go down hill sharply as soon as you install it anywhere that air is restricted. Guess what? A large percentage of places for LED best value is in those places where access is difficult and air is restricted.
    We’ve see some mighty big LED bulb recalls in last two years stemming from thermal design carelessness. …let’s first make sure they meet fundamental expectations as a trustworthy long-life, electricity-saving source of light for basic needs. We’re not there yet because this very real issue is being ignored by every existing supplier, without exception, of 40-, 60-, and 100-watt equivalent A-19 style LED bulbs.

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