CHAPTER

LED lights

10

THERE'S A NEW KID IN TOWN

Everyone is familiar with LEDs—those tiny colored indicator lights that flickered on your stereo back when you were a teenager. They seem more like electronic components than lamps, and that's exactly what they are: solid-state semiconductors called light-emitting diodes.

In recent years, LED technology has evolved beyond all recognition. In the 1990s, the first efficient blue LEDs were developed, paving the way for RGB and white phosphor LEDs. Subsequent advances in brightness, optics, heat management, and electronic control finally made these tiny light sources viable as small illumination devices. The potential of the technology for a myriad of applications motivated huge investment ...

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