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September 16, 2011 AT 12:00 am

The Future of Light Is the LED

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The Future of Light Is the LED @ WIRED.

There’s an excellent reason LEDs have taken on the aura of inevitability: LEDs are semiconductors, and like all solid-state technology, they are getting better and cheaper on a predictable curve. In 1999, a researcher named Roland Haitz, then heading up semiconductor R&D at Hewlett-Packard, coauthored a paper that became the lighting industry’s manifesto. By charting the historical prices of LEDs and projecting forward, Haitz estimated that the amount of light they produced would increase by a factor of 20 per decade, while the cost would correspondingly drop by a factor of 10.


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3 Comments

  1. “LEDs are semiconductors, and like all solid-state technology, they are getting better and cheaper on a predictable curve.”
    Um. Not? Moore’s law happens because switching/amplification elements decrease in size, permitting more of them to be put on a particular sized wafer for (approximately) the same cost. That principle wouldn’t apply to devices whose primary purpose is to emit energy: high power RF emitters are still vacuum tubes, for instance…

  2. I love this for the opening visual itself. :))

  3. @K Scharf My CFLs are dimmable… not sure why you can’t find any.

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