The Rise of Quantum Dots

Andrea Guenzel, ECS Publications Specialist, recently spotted a CNN article on quantum dots and how they’re poised to change industry.

The technology behind Edison’s incandescent blub may be a thing of the past, but the warm, gentle glow that it produced may be making its way back into your living room.

But we’re not scrapping the advancements in LEDs and regressing to old technology to do this. Instead, we’re turning our attention to quantum dots—the tiny crystal-like particles that are 10,000 times smaller than the width of human hair.

And the dots’ applications do not end simply at bulbs. These tiny bursts of light are expected to impact displays, solar cells, and cancer imaging equipment as well.

On top of providing more accurate colors and more vibrant imaging, the quantum dots are also more energy efficient—requiring a very small amount of energy to operate.

Quantum dots are now able to see mainstream use, thanks to researchers. In the past, the dots had limited manufacturing potential due to their containment of cadmium, a toxic heavy metal that faces tight trade regulations globally.

The researchers found a way to mass-produce quantum dots without heavy metals, so the applications are limitless—ranging from the medical illumination of cancer tumors and improved and affordable alternative energy solutions.

Plus, if you opt for the yellow glow of the incandescent bulb over the harsh white-blue of LEDs, you’re in luck.

“We can tune quantum dots to make that old Thomas Edison glow we all know and love,” said Michael Edelman, CEO of UK-based Nanoco, a quantum dot manufacturer.

[Source: CNN]

Looking for more info on quantum dots? Head over the the ECS Digital Library and check out these papers!

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