Photo: Daily Mail, ©Matthew Power MasonsWithin two years, we could all be paying 75 percent less for home lighting than we are now, with $3 light bulbs that last 60 years and could reduce emission of carbon dioxide by 5 million tons a year!
Researchers at Cambridge Univerisity say their new LED bulbs do not
contain mercury and they do not flicker. (Flickering can lead to
migraine aura and epileptic seizures.) And they're bright!
The researchers first developed their energy-saving bulb using gallium nitride, a man-made semiconductor used to make LED's, such as those used in bicycle lights, cell phones, and camera flashes. But to make a household light bulb using the same methods would have resulted in a $30 light bulb, because the gallium nitride was being made on a more expensive material, sapphire wafers.
But yesterday, London's Daily Mail reported that the University-based Centre for Gallium Nitride scientists found a less expensive method of growing the semiconductor -- silicon wafers. So, it seems like it's heads up for manufacturing the new 100,000 hour bulbs, as they are already on the drawing board at RFMD, a company not far from Cambridge.
Professor Colin Humpreys, who is pictured above with the new LED bulbs, said, "This could well be the holy grail in terms of providing our lighting needs for the future."