needs of both manufacturing and research. The program addresses the range of R&D from basic research and development to production and applications of LEDs, as well as a considerable effort to understand human-factor responses to light and understand how light is perceived.


Current Obstacles to LED Development

Moderator David Goldston asked the panel to describe the greatest current obstacles to the development of solid-state lighting. He received the following responses:

  • Dr. Ginsberg said that investment is a key, then technical breakthroughs, and finally “the will.”

  • Dr. Attwood emphasized the two major phases of developing any new technology. The first is to develop the technology itself and then demonstrate it through laboratory testing and through, for example, limited uses for space or the military. The second phase, which requires major investments, is to “mature” the technology, strengthen its reliability, and raise manufacturing yields. “Historically,” he said, “95 percent or more of the cost of bringing any technology to the market occurs in the maturation stage.”

  • Dr. Brown emphasized the importance of improved standards and measurements. Before any technology is adopted, manufacturers have to agree on standard metrics to describe how it is produced and quantified. This does not mean there cannot be unique applications, she said, but broad-based acceptance across a range of applications requires standardization, at least in the beginning.

  • Dr. Romig said that more early-stage research was needed to provide leverage. Development of solid-state lighting requires more multidisciplinary research in solid-state electronics and optical tools, optical luminescence, and polymer chemistry research. Funding for these areas has multiple benefits, because they will have applications to optoelectronics beyond lighting.

Barriers to Acceptance and Funding Needs

Dr. Wessner asked about circumstances during the development of Edison’s incandescent bulb and about the magnitude of financing that would be required for a partnership for solid-state lighting. Dr. Ginsberg replied that Edison invented the incandescent bulb in 1889 but that it did not enter widespread use until the 1920s. Acceptance required new manufacturing techniques and electrifica-

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