Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Light-emitting diode


The grand vision of manufacturing large-area emissive devices with low-cost roll-to-roll coating methods, akin to how newspapers are produced, appeared with the emergence of the organic light-emitting diode about 20 years ago. Today, small organic light-emitting diode displays are commercially available in smartphones, but the promise of a continuous ambient fabrication has unfortunately not materialized yet, as organic light-emitting diodes invariably depend on the use of one or more time- and energy-consuming process steps under vacuum. Here we report an all-solution-based fabrication of an alternative emissive device, a light-emitting electrochemical cell, using a slot-die roll-coating apparatus. The fabricated flexible sheets exhibit bidirectional and uniform light emission, and feature a fault-tolerant >1-μm-thick active material that is doped in situ during operation. It is notable that the initial preparation of inks, the subsequent coating of the constituent layers and the final device operation all could be executed under ambient air.

Concepts: Cathode, Vacuum tube, Light, Solar cell, Electrode, Light-emitting diode, Diode, Light-emitting diodes


We describe the first implanted glucose biofuel cell (GBFC) that is capable of generating sufficient power from a mammal’s body fluids to act as the sole power source for electronic devices. This GBFC is based on carbon nanotube/enzyme electrodes, which utilize glucose oxidase for glucose oxidation and laccase for dioxygen reduction. The GBFC, implanted in the abdominal cavity of a rat, produces an average open-circuit voltage of 0.57 V. This implanted GBFC delivered a power output of 38.7 μW, which corresponded to a power density of 193.5 μW cm(-2) and a volumetric power of 161 μW mL(-1). We demonstrate that one single implanted enzymatic GBFC can power a light-emitting diode (LED), or a digital thermometer. In addition, no signs of rejection or inflammation were observed after 110 days implantation in the rat.

Concepts: Adenosine triphosphate, Enzyme, Glucose, Redox, Carbon, Rat, Light-emitting diode, Diode


We report an enhancement in light emission efficiency of Si nanocrystal (NC) light-emitting diodes (LEDs) by employing 5.5 periods of SiCN/SiC superlattices (SLs). SiCN and SiC layers in SiCN/SiC SLs were designed by considering the optical bandgap to induce the uniform electron sheet parallel to the SL planes. The electrical property of Si NC LED with SiCN/SiC SLs was improved. In addition, light output power and wall-plug efficiency of the Si NC LED with SiCN/SiC SLs were also enhanced by 50% and 40%, respectively. This was attributed to both the formation of two-dimensional electron gas, i.e., uniform electron sheet parallel to the SiCN/SiC SL planes due to the conduction band offset between the SiCN layer and SiC layer, and an enhanced electron transport into the Si NCs due to a lower tunneling barrier height. We show here that the use of the SiCN/SiC SL structure can be very useful in realizing a highly efficient Si NC LED.

Concepts: Quantum dot, Semiconductor, Light-emitting diode, Lighting, Diode, Luminous efficacy, Aluminium nitride, LED lamp


Metal halides perovskites, such as hybrid organic-inorganic CH3NH3PbI3, are newcomer optoelectronic materials that have attracted enormous attention as solution-deposited absorbing layers in solar cells with power conversion efficiencies reaching 20%. Herein we demonstrate a new avenue for halide perovskties by designing perovskite-based quantum dot materials. We have synthesized monodisperse, colloidal nanocubes (4-15 nm edge lengths) of fully inorganic cesium lead halide perovskites (CsPbX3, X=Cl, Br, I or mixed halide systems Cl/Br and Br/I) using inexpensive commercial precursors. Through compositional modulations and quantum size-effects, the bandgap energies and emission spectra are readily tunable over the entire visible spectral region of 410-700 nm. The photoluminescence of CsPbX3 nanocrystals is characterized by narrow emission line-widths of 12-42 nm, wide color gamut covering up to 140% of the NTSC color standard, high quantum yields of up to 90% and radiative lifetimes in the range of 4-29 ns. The compelling combination of enhanced optical properties and chemical robustness makes CsPbX3 nanocrystals appealing for optoelectronic applications, particularly for blue and green spectral regions (410-530 nm), where typical metal chalcogenide-based quantum dots suffer from photodegradation.

Concepts: Quantum dot, Color, Solar cell, Light-emitting diode, Color space, Band gap, Color theory, Gamut


GaN-based light-emitting diodes (LEDs) have been widely accepted as highly efficient solid-state light sources capable of replacing conventional incandescent and fluorescent lamps. However, their applications are limited to small devices because their fabrication process is expensive as it involves epitaxial growth of GaN by metal-organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) on single crystalline sapphire wafers. If a low-cost epitaxial growth process such as sputtering on a metal foil can be used, it will be possible to fabricate large-area and flexible GaN-based light-emitting displays. Here we report preparation of GaN films on nearly lattice-matched flexible Hf foils using pulsed sputtering deposition (PSD) and demonstrate feasibility of fabricating full-color GaN-based LEDs. It was found that introduction of low-temperature (LT) grown layers suppressed the interfacial reaction between GaN and Hf, allowing the growth of high-quality GaN films on Hf foils. We fabricated blue, green, and red LEDs on Hf foils and confirmed their normal operation. The present results indicate that GaN films on Hf foils have potential applications in fabrication of future large-area flexible GaN-based optoelectronics.

Concepts: Semiconductor, Chemical vapor deposition, Wafer, Light-emitting diode, Semiconductor device fabrication, Epitaxy, Gallium nitride, Black light


Light-operated drugs constitute a major target in drug discovery, since they may provide spatiotemporal resolution for the treatment of complex diseases (i.e. chronic pain). JF-NP-26 is an inactive photocaged derivative of the metabotropic glutamate type 5 (mGlu5) receptor negative allosteric modulator raseglurant. Violet light illumination of JF-NP-26 induces a photochemical reaction prompting the active-drug’s release, which effectively controls mGlu5 receptor activity both in ectopic expressing systems and in striatal primary neurons. Systemic administration in mice followed by local light-emitting diode (LED)-based illumination, either of the thalamus or the peripheral tissues, induced JF-NP-26-mediated light-dependent analgesia both in neuropathic and in acute/tonic inflammatory pain models. These data offer the first example of optical control of analgesia in vivo using a photocaged mGlu5 receptor negative allosteric modulator. This approach shows potential for precisely targeting, in time and space, endogenous receptors, which may allow a better management of difficult-to-treat disorders.

Concepts: Nervous system, Energy, Light, Ligand, Pain, Metabotropic receptor, Light-emitting diode, Lighting


Multiview three-dimensional (3D) displays can project the correct perspectives of a 3D image in many spatial directions simultaneously. They provide a 3D stereoscopic experience to many viewers at the same time with full motion parallax and do not require special glasses or eye tracking. None of the leading multiview 3D solutions is particularly well suited to mobile devices (watches, mobile phones or tablets), which require the combination of a thin, portable form factor, a high spatial resolution and a wide full-parallax view zone (for short viewing distance from potentially steep angles). Here we introduce a multi-directional diffractive backlight technology that permits the rendering of high-resolution, full-parallax 3D images in a very wide view zone (up to 180 degrees in principle) at an observation distance of up to a metre. The key to our design is a guided-wave illumination technique based on light-emitting diodes that produces wide-angle multiview images in colour from a thin planar transparent lightguide. Pixels associated with different views or colours are spatially multiplexed and can be independently addressed and modulated at video rate using an external shutter plane. To illustrate the capabilities of this technology, we use simple ink masks or a high-resolution commercial liquid-crystal display unit to demonstrate passive and active (30 frames per second) modulation of a 64-view backlight, producing 3D images with a spatial resolution of 88 pixels per inch and full-motion parallax in an unprecedented view zone of 90 degrees. We also present several transparent hand-held prototypes showing animated sequences of up to six different 200-view images at a resolution of 127 pixels per inch.

Concepts: Optics, Computer graphics, Depth perception, Light-emitting diode, Display resolution, Liquid crystal display, Angle, Pixel


To facilitate the next generation of high-power white-light-emitting diodes (white LEDs), the discovery of more efficient red-emitting phosphor materials is essential. In this regard, the hardly explored compound class of nitridoaluminates affords a new material with superior luminescence properties. Doped with Eu(2+), Sr[LiAl3N4] emerged as a new high-performance narrow-band red-emitting phosphor material, which can efficiently be excited by GaN-based blue LEDs. Owing to the highly efficient red emission at λmax ~ 650 nm with a full-width at half-maximum of ~1,180 cm(-1) (~50 nm) that shows only very low thermal quenching (>95% relative to the quantum efficiency at 200 °C), a prototype phosphor-converted LED (pc-LED), employing Sr[LiAl3N4]:Eu(2+) as the red-emitting component, already shows an increase of 14% in luminous efficacy compared with a commercially available high colour rendering index (CRI) LED, together with an excellent colour rendition (Ra8 = 91, R9 = 57). Therefore, we predict great potential for industrial applications in high-power white pc-LEDs.

Concepts: Color, Light-emitting diode, Lighting, Color temperature, Next Generation, LEd, Luminous efficacy, Color rendering index


Tachistoscopes allow brief visual stimulation delivery, which is crucial for experiments in which subliminal presentation is required. Up to now, tachistoscopes have had shortcomings with respect to timing accuracy, reliability, and flexibility of use. Here, we present a new and inexpensive two-channel tachistoscope that allows for exposure durations in the submillisecond range with an extremely high timing accuracy. The tachistoscope consists of two standard liquid-crystal display (LCD) monitors of the light-emitting diode (LED) backlight type, a semipermeable mirror, a mounting rack, and an experimental personal computer (PC). The monitors have been modified to provide external access to the LED backlights, which are controlled by the PC via the standard parallel port. Photodiode measurements confirmed reliable operation of the tachistoscope and revealed switching times of 3 μs. Our method may also be of great advantage in single-monitor setups, in which it allows for manipulating the stimulus timing with submillisecond precision in many experimental situations. Where this is not applicable, the monitor can be operated in standard mode by disabling the external backlight control instantaneously.

Concepts: Light-emitting diode, Liquid crystal display, Diode, Personal computer, Cathode ray tube, Backlight, Gamut, Parallel port


A 2010 study exposed Staphylococcus aureus to ultraviolet (UV) radiation and thermal heating from pulsed xenon flash lamps. The results suggested that disinfection could be caused not only by photochemical changes from UV radiation, but also by photophysical stress damage caused by the disturbance from incoming pulses. The study called for more research in this area. The recent advances in light-emitting diode (LED) technology include the development of LEDs that emit in narrow bands in the ultraviolet-C (UV-C) range (100-280 nm), which is highly effective for UV disinfection of organisms. Further, LEDs would use less power, and allow more flexibility than other sources of UV energy in that the user may select various pulse repetition frequencies (PRFs), pulse irradiances, pulse widths, duty cycles and types of waveform output (e.g. square waves, sine waves, triangular waves, etc.). Our study exposed Escherichia coli samples to square pulses of 272 nm radiation at various PRFs and duty cycles. A statistically significant correlation was found between E. coli’s disinfection sensitivity and these parameters. Although our sample size was small, these results show promise and are worthy of further investigation. Comparisons are also made with pulsed disinfection by LEDs emitting at 365 nm, and pulsed disinfection by xenon flash lamps.

Concepts: Ultraviolet, Optical fiber, Light-emitting diode, Phosphor, Diode, Infrared, Black light, Square wave