Invention of Blue LEDs

By Himanshu

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There was a time when Thomas Edison’s original incandescent light bulb revolutionized the early 20th century. He attempted many times and also failed multiple times but finally made the incandescent bulb which for many decades lit up entire humanity and is also used today. But as the time passed this technology became more and more expensive. Then came the LEDs or the Light Emitting Diodes. But again the problem was that only limited colors of LEDs like Red and Green were invented. 

The colours you are seeing on your portable device on which you must be reading this text is only possible because of the invention that changed the world and is continuing to do so. This invention was not easy and took years for it to be realized. Scientists from many countries spent years of hardwork and research. Then finally it was realized on one fine day of 1994 by the scientists of “The Land of the Rising Sun”.

You must be aware about the fact that the mixing of Red, Green and Blue colour leads to White colour. This exact problem was in front of the scientists in the late 20th century that they had red and green LEDs but not blue LED. Because of which the bright colours you see today on your smartphones and television screens would not have been there. Could you image the world without coloured smartphones? 

Slim Screens which we use today is only possible because of LEDs and the bright colours which we see in it is only possible because of the blue LED. Could be imagine that if blue LEDs were not invented then if we want to see coloured screens then we have to use those very thick old screens. Then smartphones would not be portable anymore. With the blue LED more innovation was possible. 

Scientists tried many times but were not successful in inventing the blue LED. The process was extremely critical and a high degree of precision was required. LEDs contains semiconductors in them. The joining of semiconductors required a highly contaminate free environment and a specific temperature. On top of this the exact composition required to build blue LED was unknown and Scientists around the world were burning the midnight oil but were not successful.

But then around 1994, three Japanese scientists Shuju Nakamura, Isamu Akasaki and Hiroshi Amano came as our saviour and invented the much needed blue LED. There three scientists were also awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in the year 2014.

This new invention opened up far greater avenues for new industries to bloom. This new invention totally revolutionized the technology industry. The DATA which we call as the new oil would not have been called so without this invention. In 2019, the smartphones industry was valued at USD 715 billion and is expected to reach USD 1352 billion by 2025. This would not have been possible if the blue LED was not invented. The entire service industry was revolutionized and new sectors started blooming up. Design industry had a much greater positive impact. Many new jobs were created and more people were employed. New educational institutions and courses started coming up. 

The social life of mankind totally changed. With is invention of blue LED and then the extremely portable smartphones, humans are able to communicate more efficiently through the usage of technologies like Video Calling and Chatting. Today a student is able to attend bright and colourful lectures. Televisions are getting thinner and thinner with more immersive experience. Do you remember those fat  and heavy television sets? Now more light and slim television are available and all this would not have been possible without the invention of the blue LED.

This invention helped us to save a lot of money and also reduce the harmful effects on the environment with usage of fluorescent and incandescent bulbs which emit green house gases in the environment. Now we are able to produce more bright and environment friendly LED bulbs that consumes less electricity and is more efficient and economical. Now more power efficient electronic gadgets are made. 

Nobel prize is awarded to people who have conferred the greatest benefit to mankind. Truly these Japanese scientists have done wonders by inventing the blue LED which have changed the way mankind uses light. Billions of Dollars was been earned and millions of jobs have been created with the use of this blue LED. This invention has truly changed the world. Filled colours in the lives of billions of people and will continue to do so for centuries to come. 

By Himanshu, Narela, Delhi

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