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Best of both worlds (LED technology) Answered

People working under Professor John Rogers of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have managed to combine the robustness of inorganic LEDs (the kind we use so much here), with the physical flexibility of organic LEDs.

They have devised a new mass-production method that allows large numbers of small LEDs to be picked up by a robotic arm and embedded into a wide variety of other surfaces, including glass and rubber.

The LEDs are bright enough that they can be spread out far enough to be transparent, paving the way for displays built into windows.

This is not new science, just new engineering.

What would you do with it?

BBC story
University of Illinois
The BBC picked the story up from Science magazine.

6 Replies

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Kryptonite (author)2009-09-11

I'd imbed it into the glass of my watch, and have GPS, things like that, all at the flick of a wrist.

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Kiteman (author)Kryptonite2009-09-11

Or what about a HUD in your sunglasses? I wonder what the resolution can get to - would it work in contacts?

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Kryptonite (author)Kiteman2009-09-13

*Tries* Arg it burns! So bright! No I don't think it would a little to... for lack of better word, pixelated. But I like the HUD idea. I read something a while back, about instead of a newspaper people would have just one large sheet like a screen, with updates each day therefore reducing the need to cut down however many thousand hectares of forest every day for news.

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=SMART= (author)2009-08-23
Well just thinking about glass and rubber heres what I though of

  • LED thermometer on wetsuits displaying water temperature, and maybe a small clock too
  • A new phone by LG has a see through keypad (pic), maybe if you could get the LED's small enough you could have a fully transparent phone or gadget.
  • Business cards with scrolling messages or information
  • Could have many many HUD (Heads up display) applications as you would'nt have to project the info onto the glass because you could embed the LED's inside
  • if you have seen the film "Iron Man" you would have seen Tony Stark's incredible house, In one scene starks freind from the previous night wakes up and information is displayed on the large window, tempreature, surf, news and other things. This new tech could make such awesomeness a reality.

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Kiteman (author)=SMART=2009-08-23

That's a good start - the wetsuit display could read out the whole thing as well - water pressure, oxygen remaining, count-down, digital compass... Oh! It would be convenient to have a digital display on the shoulders of my rucksack, showing GPS-type data at a glance, without having to fill my hands with gadgets.

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=SMART= (author)Kiteman2009-08-24