LED lighting can provide huge energy savings but the high manufacturing costs of the technology has, so far, prevented it from being widely adopted. Now, Zhibin Yu — an engineering professor from Florida State University — has developed a low cost variation of the light-emitting diode, which could lead to greater uptake of the eco-friendly option.
Yu’s single-layer LED technology is a combination of organic and inorganic materials. It dissolves and is applied like paint as a thin film. It can then be sandwiched between indium tin oxide and indium-gallium eutectic, and used to make a lightbulb, which will shine a blue, green or red light. While current LED materials are constructed from four or five layers on top of each other, Yu’s LED paint only needs one layer — making it significantly simpler and cheaper to manufacture.
Residential LED lighting uses more than 75 percent less energy than incandescent lights, and can also last significantly longer than both incandescent and fluorescent lights. How could consumers be encouraged to use more LED lighting?