Potential New Material for Future LEDs
Light emitting diodes have been growing in popularity in recent years, thanks to their relatively high efficiency. Compared to more traditional light sources though, they can be quite expensive though, so many are searching for ways to bring down costs. Researchers at the University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität have recently discovered a form of perovskite that is inexpensive, but is still a very clean semiconductor.
Perovskite is a class of materials with a special structure made of cuboid and diamond shapes, which also have superconducting and ferroelectric properties. In this research, it was organometal halide perovskites, consisting of lead, carbon-based ions, and halides, that were used. These materials easily dissolve in common solvents and form crystals when dried, which makes them very cheap and easy to produce, especially compared to the materials traditional used to make LEDs. The key discovery to this research though was that the crystals that formed had very clean semiconductor properties, and would not need to be run through purification processes to be useable for LEDs.
Another aspect of perovskite that makes LEDs based on them interesting is that they can be easily tuned to emit different colors, potentially enabling them to be used in future displays. The researchers estimate it may be five years before we may see perovskite-based LEDs being commercially available though.
Source: University of Cambridge