Organic Light Emitting Devices Could Put the Light Bulb to Bed

Imagine if the window in your living room let in light during the day, turned into an efficient light source in the evening, and then became a movie screen. This may be a reality sooner rather than later thanks to a technology called Organic Light Emitting Devices (OLEDs). OLEDs already exist and are poised to hit the market as cell phone screens, but as we’ve reported, until now they have been limited to single color displays. The leap has now been made to OLEDs that efficiently emit broad spectrum light suitable for illuminating interior spaces. Announced in the magazine Nature, and the result of 13 years of work by University of Southern California and University of Michigan researchers, these OLEDs could create flexible illuminated surfaces that could be situated almost anywhere from walls to windows to curtains. "This process will enable us to get 100 percent efficiency out of a single, broad spectrum light source," said Mark Thompson of USC. Because OLEDs are transparent when shut off, these efficient and long-lived light sources could function as windows when not in use or as flatscreen monitors. :: Gizmag (Image credit: