Alternative Materials for Phosphor Coatings
Researchers from the University of Leuven (Belgium) and the University of Strasbourg (France) have developed a new material that has the same effect as conventional phosphors in blue light, while offering a lower manufacturing cost and reduced toxicity.
This technology uses silver clusters embedded in zeolites, which are naturally porous materials that can also be produced synthetically. Silver clusters can scatter light just like conventional phosphors, but their application in LED lighting had been limited due to instability: they tend to merge into larger crystals over time, losing their optical properties. However, when silver clusters are embedded in zeolites, this effect is prevented.
In large-scale manufacturing, silver zeolites can achieve a lower cost than conventional phosphors, while offering an improved optical performance. This will translate into a higher luminous output for each dollar spent on LED lighting.