Traditional LEDs (Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)
According to Plataforma SINC scientists from Germany and Spain have developed a method of preparing a new biological LEDs (BioLEDs) based on the luminescent proteins placed in a polymer matrix. The obtained structure has a form of a rubber. Device emits white light using a blue or ultraviolet LED as a backlight and a combination of new luminescent rubbers giving off red, blue or green light. The final result is similar to the traditional inorganic LEDs but at a lower cost.
The popularity of traditional LEDs is related to their efficiency and long-term stability, however it is possible to enumerate also a few quite important disadvantages. Traditional white LEDs are produced using the rare earth metals (e.g. cerium and yttrium) that are currently relatively expensive and in short supply. Moreover, a white light emitted by those LEDs lacks a red component, what is not optimal for human eyesight and can cause a negative psychological effect on people exposed to them for long periods of time. A new bioLEDs is a combination of blue LED covered with rubbers emitting green and red light, or ultraviolet LED and blue, green and red rubber. As a result BioLEDs give off a pure white light created by similar parts of the colours blue, green and red, while maintaining the efficiency equal to inorganic LEDs.
BioLEDs' developers claim, that their device is simple to manufacture and its materials are low-cost and biodegradable. What's more, BioLEDs are stable in time and can be stored under different environmental conditions of light, temperature and humidity.Source: Plataforma SINCOriginal paper: Advanced Materials; DOI: 10.1002/adma.201502349