Blue LEDs: A Way to Increase Lighting Efficiency

The Nobel Prize in physics went to three scientists who developed blue light-emitting diode (LED) lights which can drastically change lighting efficiency around the world. Red and green diodes have existed for several years now, but the addition of blue diodes allowed for the production of white-light LED bulbs.

The laureates triggered a transformation of lighting technology when they produced bright blue light from semiconductors in the 1990s, something scientists had struggled with for decades,” the Nobel committee stated.

LEDs use much less energy than regular bulbs. The average LED bulb can produce 83 lumens per watt compared with 67 for a CFL bulb and 16 for an incandescent. LEDs also last approximately 30 times longer than regular light bulbs: they promise a life span of 17 years if used for about 4 hours daily.

As about one-fourth of world electricity consumption is used for lighting purposes, the LEDs contribute to saving the Earth’s resources,” the committee said.

The main concern for adopting LEDs is price which is twice as high as the price of CFLs. However, these prices have been going down recently and the use of light-emitting diodes has increased. It is predicted that from 2014 and onward, LEDs will have the largest revenue share of all lighting technologies.

LEDs are not only used in households: they are often used for street lights, public holiday displays, commercial buildings and other purposes. All of these uses result in cheaper electricity bills.

Read more here – “Nobel Prize Goes to Inventors of Blue LED: Why It Was Revolutionary,” (Christina Nunez, National Geographic).

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Anna is a current student at The George Washington University in Washington, DC with a concentration in Marketing and Communication. She specializes in social media outreach and has experience working in government contracting.

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