LED Lights - Its History, Working Principle, and Applications – Suaoki

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LED Lights - Its History, Working Principle, and Applications

M G K K

Posted on February 24 2019

Starting from the age of accidental fires, when humans discovered the use of light and heat, we have come a long way towards LED lights. With the flip of a switch or the touch of a button, getting artificial light is way easier and simpler in the 21st century. Thanks to Henry Joseph Round who discovered the LED technology back in 1907. But it wasn’t until 1962 when Nick Holonyack invented a practical LED light that emitted light in the visible spectrum and is thus known as the “father of LED”. Years later now, we have a much more efficient, affordable and smart LED lights for our homes, offices, industries, and any other place that is used by human beings. 

SUAOKI LED Lights history
LED lights history. via southeastelectrical 

 

LED lights The working principle

LED stands for a "Light Emitting Diode". In scientific terms, diode is a semiconductor device with two terminals i.e. anode and cathode, that allows current flow in only one direction. For a light emitting diode, current enters through the anode emits visible light at the junctions and goes out via the cathode. Okay, let's make it interesting, consider an LED as the opposite of photovoltaic (PV) cells. PV cells are semiconductor diodes that absorb light and convert it into electrical energy; these are the cells that we use in solar panels to generate energy from the ever glowing sun. Whilst LEDdoes the same process in the opposite direction, taking electrical energy and converting it into visible light.

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SUAOKI LED Lights symbol
LED symbol. via phssicsandradioelectronics

 

What was before LED lights? 

Before LED lights, humankind used incandescent light bulbs as a conventional lighting system. An incandescent bulb used a filament inside a glass bob to heat up and glow. However, these bulbs utilize only about 2% of the energy provided to produce light in the visible spectrum and the rest of the 98% energy is lost as heat energy dissipated from the bulb. This was very inefficient, and we definitely needed a much better artificial light system. The incandescent filament bulbs were also very sensitive to current changes and fluctuating temperatures, which drastically affected its durability.



SUAOKI LED Lights Incandescent bulb
Filament bulb. via videoblocks

 

When the LED lights are applied with a voltage difference across the two terminals, with the positive side connected to the anode and the negative side connected to the cathode of the semiconductior diode, current flows and the LED emits light, this condition is called a forward bias. Reverse bias is the vice-versa, where a node is connected to the negative and cathode is connected to the negative side of the diode. In reverse bias, no light is emitted, and higher voltages may even permanently damage the diode and thus make useless.

 

Why LED lights?

Although this might sound a lot of technical information to digest, the important part to take from this is that LEDs have brought about a major change in the light-market. Compared to incandescent bulbs, LEDs are a much more durable, lightweight, inexpensive, efficient and produces less heat. All these are the characteristics that we desire in our modern lighting systems. 

SUAOKI LED Lights colors
Colorful LEDs. via happyshoppinglife

 

Advantages of LED lights

Unlike the incandescent bulbs, LED lights do not have any filament and emit light by the transfer of electrons on the PN junction of the diode, which dissipates very little to almost no heat energy. The low heat emission is desired and widely used to light up refrigerators, cold rooms, and other places with low temperatures. LED lights are also much more reliable and durable; commercial LEDs are rated for about 50,000 hours and up to 100,000 hours, making them a wide choice in the market. LED lights, with their low consumption of energy, has also helped immensely with power savings, and a cut on electricity bills. 

 

LED lights and renewable energy sources

Renewable energy sources such as solar panels have vastly become much more effective with LEDs lights. How you may ask. Well consider this, an LED bulb with about 2600 lumens intensity only requires 25 -watt LED light, while the same intensity of light would require a 150-watt incandescent bulb. That is saving you more than 80% of energy. And with solar panels only about 20% efficient, lesser energy demands because of LED lights at homes, offices, industries and more, it is much easier for humans to adapt and change systems towards renewable energy sources.   

SUAOKI LED Lights lantern
SUAOKI LED camping lantern. via youtube

 

Applications of LED lights

LEDs lights are now used in almost all of our light sources. From camping lamps to portable torches, from flood-lights to household light rods. Even the car headlight bulbs are now replaced with smart and efficient LED headlights. Here are some products from SUAOKI that uses LED lights as torches to light up your vicinity in the dark. The whole world has enjoyed the fruits of this advanced technology as a whole; lesser energy consumption also means lesser pollution from the burning of fossil fuels generate electricity and meet demands. 

SUAOKI LED Lights S270
SUAOKI S270 portable power station with LED flashlight. via SUAOKI.com

 

Confused? Got some questions? Don't worry, just leave us a comment below and we will help you with your queries.

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