LED displays are a booming industry today, with an estimated 3.5 Million screens currently in use today, and an expectation that number will at least double by 2015. It's little wonder, since LED displays are brighter, longer-lasting, more versatile, and yet still more energy-efficient than any other type of illuminated signage.
So, let's take a look back at where LEDs came from, and where they are today.
The History of LED Displays
What's remarkable is that LED displays are a relatively new industry, given their growth rate.LED stands for Light Emitting Diode, and is based on the principle of electroluminescence, which was discovered in 1907. This field studies materials, which produce light naturally when a current is applied, as opposed to light sources such as traditional light bulbs, which rely on incandescence. Electroluminescent materials are far less wasteful because the power is converted almost entirely into light, rather than producing heat as well.
Although the original LED was actually invented by Oleg Vladimirovich Losev in 1927, nothing was done with the technology until the 1960s. In 1962, Nick Holonyak, Jr, created the first true LED while he was working for General Electric. Unfortunately, these LED lights were only available in a faint red that was only useful for certain indoor work, such as in photographic darkrooms. They were also too expensive for general use, costing up to $200 per light.
The technology was refined throughout the 70s and the 80s, eventually finding a home in consumer electronics such as pocket calculators and portable video games. It was not until the mid-1990s that LED became viable for signage, thanks to the back-to-back inventions of effective blue and white LED colors, allowing for a full range of colors to be displayed.
The creation of multi-colored LED lights along with constant improvements to light output have led to the LED we enjoy today.
LED Displays Today
These days, LED signage can be found around the world, from Boston to Bangkok. Businesses of all types utilize them to reach out to customers, display custom messages, and to stand out from the other illuminated displays on the street.
For a technology that only became viable in the 1990s, the rise of LED displays to prominence in the signage industry is truly remarkable. If you haven't investigated their benefits yet, now is a perfect time to look into their uses.
How do you use LED displays for your business? Share your success stories with us!
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