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Shin-Etsu promises longer-life, brighter LEDs

Shin-Etsu promises longer-life, brighter LEDs

Shin-Etsu's new encapsulating material will, the company claims, lead to brighter LEDs with a longer lifespan.

Shin-Etsu Chemical, a company perhaps best known in these circles for its thermal grease products, has announced an innovation in LED technology which promises to boost brightness without reducing lifespan.

Forming the heart of many a case lighting project, as seen in our series on case lighting, LEDs are cheap and easy to use. They also generate far less heat than traditional lighting systems, although the brighter models can require some form of heatsink to stay cool.

Sadly, they're not perfect: despite promised lifespans of thousands of hours, various issues - thermal cycling, gas permeation and others - conspire to send LEDs dark before their time.

Shin-Etsu's solution to the problem is a new silicone encapsulating material which it claims boosts reliability while ensuring superior brightness through increased transparency and a lower refractive index than other encapsulating materials.

Designed for use with high-brightness LEDs (HBLEDs) often used in case mods and home lighting systems, the new encapsulating material is claimed to have significantly reduced gas permeability over previous materials. The result, Shin-Etsu claims, is a reduction in corrosion of peripheral materials that can lead to reduced light output over time and even premature failure.

The announcement comes as Shin-Etsu looks to increase its presence in the HBLED market, having recently also announced new heat-radiation die-bond materials, lens reflectors, reflector materials and moisture-proof insulating materials. Clearly, the company isn't just targeting the enthusiast: its products are finding their way into commercial home lighting products and as backlights on TVs and laptops.

Shin-Etsu has yet to confirm when LEDs based around the new material, known as the KER-7000 series, will be available to buy.

11 Comments

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bowman 17th February 2012, 15:34 Quote
Very good - the phosphor is the main source of loss in LEDs.
bulldogjeff 17th February 2012, 16:03 Quote
OOOOOOOo, more pretty lighting for me and Blarte to play with. He's going to be so happy when he reads this..
kingred 17th February 2012, 17:30 Quote
They are quite an unknown player in the LED market, Cree,general electric and phillips have spent billions investing in r&d developing their products.

Having a new encapsulating material and proclaiming it "brighter" without any facts is quite a stretch considering cree this year are breaking the 160lumens/watt barrier.
feathers 18th February 2012, 09:48 Quote
It would be better to show a prototype at least before making the claims but if it works out then it will be great.

LED's are already way brighter than I remember in the 70's when I started with electronics. The colours were very dull back then.
ch424 18th February 2012, 11:07 Quote
I like how they made the diagram in Word 97
benji2412 18th February 2012, 11:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ch424
I like how they made the diagram in Word 97

Seems legit.
greigaitken 18th February 2012, 17:45 Quote
cool, hope this improves head torches too
mclean007 19th February 2012, 06:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ch424
I like how they made the diagram in Word 97
Ha! Just needs a funky 3D title in WordArt and it could be any school kid's science report. I particularly love the aliasing on the arrows. Nice.
longweight 19th February 2012, 08:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by feathers
It would be better to show a prototype at least before making the claims but if it works out then it will be great.

LED's are already way brighter than I remember in the 70's when I started with electronics. The colours were very dull back then.

They still aren't efficient enough though.
mclean007 19th February 2012, 09:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by longweight
Quote:
Originally Posted by feathers
It would be better to show a prototype at least before making the claims but if it works out then it will be great.

LED's are already way brighter than I remember in the 70's when I started with electronics. The colours were very dull back then.

They still aren't efficient enough though.
compared to what? They are massively more efficient than any competing lighting technology.
longweight 19th February 2012, 09:41 Quote
Not always and it depends how define the efficiency. The chips themselves are efficient but when you start putting them in GU10 lamp form factor with nasty onboard circuitry then the efficient and lifetime drops massively.
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