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+ - 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics awarded to the inventors of the blue LED

Submitted by grouchomarxist
grouchomarxist (127479) writes "The 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics has been awarded to Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano and Shuji Nakamura, the inventors of the blue LED.

When Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano and Shuji Nakamura produced bright blue light beams from their semi-conductors in the early 1990s, they triggered a funda-mental transformation of lighting technology. Red and green diodes had been around for a long time but without blue light, white lamps could not be created. Despite considerable efforts, both in the scientific community and in industry, the blue LED had remained a challenge for three decades.

They succeeded where everyone else had failed. Akasaki worked together with Amano at the University of Nagoya, while Nakamura was employed at Nichia Chemicals, a small company in Tokushima. Their inventions were revolutionary. Incandescent light bulbs lit the 20th century; the 21st century will be lit by LED lamps.

White LED lamps emit a bright white light, are long-lasting and energy-efficient. They are constantly improved, getting more efficient with higher luminous flux (measured in lumen) per unit electrical input power (measured in watt). The most recent record is just over 300 lm/W, which can be compared to 16 for regular light bulbs and close to 70 for fluorescent lamps. As about one fourth of world electricity consumption is used for lighting purposes, the LEDs contribute to saving the Earth’s resources. Materials consumption is also diminished as LEDs last up to 100,000 hours, compared to 1,000 for incandescent bulbs and 10,000 hours for fluorescent lights.

The LED lamp holds great promise for increasing the quality of life for over 1.5 billion people around the world who lack access to electricity grids: due to low power requirements it can be powered by cheap local solar power.

The invention of the blue LED is just twenty years old, but it has already contributed to create white light in an entirely new manner to the benefit of us all.

Shuji Nakamura went on to develop the white LED and the blue laser which is used in Blu-Ray devices."

Comment: Re:Not just Reno (Score 1) 444

by ballpoint (#47891405) Attached to: If Tesla Can Run Its Gigafactory On 100% Renewables, Why Can't Others?

...utilities failing could mean some price spikes and other problems.

Like no power being available at night, and unstable power during the day.

I'm amazed by the dumbfuckedness of solar panel owners who think the grid is an infinite source or sink, decoupled from the reality of production and demand.

Comment: Re:Fukushima too (Score 1) 444

by ballpoint (#47891239) Attached to: If Tesla Can Run Its Gigafactory On 100% Renewables, Why Can't Others?

Ah, so nuclear power is safe only where people never get lazy?

Ah, so aviation is safe only where people never get lazy?
Ah, so eating out is safe only where people never get lazy?
Ah, so driving is safe only where people never get lazy?
Ah, so swimming is safe only where people never get lazy?

And so on, and so forth.

Something being intrinsically dangerous is not a reason by itself to stop doing it. Regulations and self preservation are among the tools to mitigate the risk to acceptable levels.

Comment: Re:haven't watched it... (Score 1) 391

by ballpoint (#47727805) Attached to: UK Police Warn Sharing James Foley Killing Video Is a Crime

> Why would anyone actually want to watch it?

To better understand just how depraved the people are who made it.

I'm not joking. Supressing it gives them legitimacy - "the video the government is afraid you'll see" - but letting people watch it exposes the inhumanity of those who made it for everyone to see. The kind of people who might be convinced to join ISIS by watching this video are already so warped that censoring the video won't stop them. But no normal person is going to watch it and come away with anything but deep-seated disgust for the killers.

Quoting to improve visibility of an insightful AC post.

Comment: Re:MicroZED (Score 1) 66

by ballpoint (#45705785) Attached to: Want a FPGA Board For Your Raspberry Pi Or Beagle Bone?

If you want a smaller form factor than the ZED board, there is MicroZED.

Be advised that working with Xilinx tools, be it ISE/Planahead or Vivado, redefines frustration to a whole new level. While the actual Zynq hardware is decent, the development tools are a bl*ed s*g p*e of s*t full of bugs and undocumented 'gotchas' that chews for hours before throwing up a diarrhea of incomprehensible error messages and/or generate an unworkable result.

Xilinx support is laughable, you will at best find very cryptic hinglish that may or may not be related to your problem but certainly does not do the needful.

Make sure to charge by the hour when contracting, or when you're in the other seat, take out a big liability insurance against workers going postal or suing you for mental abuse.

Crassly stated, but there's a ring to it.

Comment: Re:toolchain? (Score 1) 66

by ballpoint (#45705767) Attached to: Want a FPGA Board For Your Raspberry Pi Or Beagle Bone?

given xilinx's history in the past, whats the toolchain situation?

in the past i've had to deal with license servers, multi-thousand dollar licenses, being locked into windows,
having to reverse engineer internal formats because the tools wouldn't work for me, having day-long
synthesis/test cycles because their routing was so abysmal, etc

admittedly I'm an old fuck, so thing may have changed

i scanned the page, but they dont seem to say a single thing about tools.

  what the situation?

No that much has changed. The good is that there are free Webpack editions for certain chips. The overwhelming bad is that the long cycles and the unexplainable bugs are still there. It's easy to lose 50K$ on needlessly wasted engineering time over the course of a single project.

Murphy's Law, that brash proletarian restatement of Godel's Theorem. -- Thomas Pynchon, "Gravity's Rainbow"

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