Intertech LEDs 2003 report: Backlights, airports and vehicles provide market impetus

As chip makers continue to improve the performance and reduce the cost of their products, new applications in areas such as airport lighting and car headlamps continue to emerge. Tim Whitaker reports from the Intertech LEDs 2003 conference.

The LED market continues to expand, driven both by existing applications such as signage and backlights for mobile appliances, and also by the emergence of new applications. Examples such as car headlamps, airport lighting and dental curing tools were among the many subjects covered at the recent LEDs 2003 meeting, which also included details of the progress being made by leading device manufacturers.

Markets: According to Jagdish Rebello of market research company iSuppli, the total LED chip market reached $3.4 billion in 2003, strongly driven by backlighting.
* See Backlighting drives market growth in 2003

White LEDs: Cree continues to make improvements to its blue LEDs, enabling the company to develop white LEDs with an efficacy of 74 lm/W.
* See Cree pushes white LEDs to limit

Automotive: LEDs are already established in some aspects of the automotive lighting market and as performance improvements continue, LEDs should be able to penetrate all the lighting applications in vehicles, even front headlamps.
* See LEDs continue push into automotive applications

Airport lighting: The Federal Aviation Administration is currently developing new standards and specifications to accommodate LEDs in airport lighting applications.
* See LED lights for airports

Chip technology: Osram Opto Semiconductors has developed a new approach to increase extraction efficiency that does not rely on sidewall emission, and allows the luminance to be scaled with chip area.
* See Osram's thin-film technology achieves 98 lm/W red LEDs

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The full version of this article can be viewed on the Compound Semiconductor magazine website.

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