LED scientists share physics Nobel

Three Japanese-born researchers have been awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics for the invention of blue light-emitting diodes

October 7, 2014

The Skr8 million (£690,000) prize money will be shared by Isamu Akasaki of Japan’s Meijo University and Nagoya University, Hiroshi Amano of Nagoya University and Shuji Nakamura of the University of California, Santa Barbara.

In a statement, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, which awards the prize, says the invention of blue LEDs in the early 1990s “triggered a fundamental transformation of lighting technology”.

Using LEDs for lighting is much more efficient than using incandescent or fluorescent bulbs. But while red and green diodes had been around for a long time, blue ones were also necessary to make white light.

“Despite considerable efforts, both in the scientific community and in industry, the blue LED had remained a challenge for three decades,” the academy says.

“The LED lamp holds great promise for increasing the quality of life for over 1.5 billion people around the world who lack access to electricity grids: due to low power requirements it can be powered by cheap local solar power.”

The academy adds that awarding the prize for “an invention of greatest benefit to mankind” is “in the spirit of Alfred Nobel”.

Professor Nakamura’s prize has previously been predicted by David Pendlebury, Thomson Reuters citation analyst, based on his very high citation count.

paul.jump@tesglobal.com

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Assistant Recruitment - Human Resources Office

University Of Nottingham Ningbo China

Outreach Officer

Gsm London

Professorship in Geomatics

Norwegian University Of Science & Technology -ntnu

Professor of European History

Newcastle University

Head of Department

University Of Chichester
See all jobs

Most Commented

men in office with feet on desk. Vintage

Three-quarters of respondents are dissatisfied with the people running their institutions

A face made of numbers looks over a university campus

From personalising tuition to performance management, the use of data is increasingly driving how institutions operate

students use laptops

Researchers say students who use computers score half a grade lower than those who write notes

Canal houses, Amsterdam, Netherlands

All three of England’s for-profit universities owned in Netherlands

As the country succeeds in attracting even more students from overseas, a mixture of demographics, ‘soft power’ concerns and local politics help explain its policy