2014 Nobel Prize for Physics goes to the inventors of blue LEDs

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2014 Nobel Prize for Physics goes to the inventors of blue LEDs

Although people may take them for granted at times, Powercare Electrical Services have long recognised the wide ranging benefits that LED lighting bring with them, allowing people to run projects that were simply unfeasible even 20 years ago. Since then, the changes within the industry have been truly monumental in both scale and scope, and you can see this on vistas and cityscapes across the world.

Scientists from countries throughout the world had made a number of attempts to create blue light-emitting diodes that were capable of emitting clear white light. Today, we see that light in everything from smartphones, computer screens and televisions to streetlights and more, but with only red and green LEDs to use, this quality was simply not available to manufacturers until recently.

It was fitting, then, that the most recent Nobel Prize for Physics went to the creators of what has been described as “the White Light Revolution”. The transformation of lighting technology as we know it began in the mid-1990s, spearheaded by the discoveries made by three Japanese scientists, Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano and Shuji Nakamura, who in 2014 were able to share the prize between them.

White Light LED Revolution

As with many scientific discoveries, LED lighting as we know it today was discovered independently – by Akasaki and Amano working at Nayoya University in Japan, and then at the same time by Nakamura whilst he was working at the chemical company Nichia. The implications of their discovery were quickly realised, and the technology used to create blue LED lights soon found applications that transformed the world as we know it.

Today, we know LED lights to be a long-lasting, energy efficient solution to our lighting needs. Even better, however, are the implications that this technology possesses in the long-term – because it is based around solid state electronics, the field of LED lighting will only continue to grow in terms of efficiency and brightness over time as materials and composites improve.

Clearly a discovery of fundamental importance, Akasaki, Amano and Nakamuro were able to see their invention change the world in the way that is already has, with the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences stating that “as Incandescent Light Bulbs lit the 20th century, the 21st century will be lit by LED lamps”, with the potential to raise energy efficiency and lower costs worldwide.

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