Model Question and Answers for APSC | The Nobel Prize in Physics of 2014 was jointly awarded to Akasaki, Amano and Nakamura for the invention of Blue LEDs in the 1990s. How has this invention impacted the everyday life of human beings ? (UPSC MAINS 2021)
Ans : The 2014 Nobel Prize for physics has been awarded to a trio of scientists in Japan and the US for the invention of blue light emitting diodes (LEDs).
1. Although red and green LEDs had been around for many years, blue LEDs were a long-standing challenge for scientists in both academia and industry.
2. Without them, the three colours could not be mixed to produce the white light we now see in LED-based computer and TV screens.
3. Furthermore, the high-energy blue light could be used to excite phosphorus and directly produce white light - the basis of the next generation of light bulb.
Invention impacted the everyday life of human beings
1. Today, blue LEDs are found in people's pockets around the world, inside the lights and screens of smartphones.
2. White LED lamps, meanwhile, deliver light to many offices and households. They use much less energy than both incandescent and fluorescent lamps.
3. That improvement arises because LEDs convert electricity directly into photons of light, instead of the wasteful mixture of heat and light generated inside traditional, incandescent bulbs. Thus reducing greenhouse gas emission by reducing energy needs.
4. This has made possible for countries like India to ensure electricity for all.
5. Those bulbs use current to heat a wire filament until it glows, while the gas discharge inside fluorescent lamps also produces both heat and light.
6. These lamps used toxic gases and metals leaving the environment polluted, while LEDs are relatively safer.