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Printable Lightpaper – The Next Lighting Technology?

Engineers at Idaho-based company Rohinni have been working on a new lighting product that is as thin as paper and similarly versatile, according to fastcolabs.com. They call it Lightpaper, and it allows them to apply LED lighting to almost any surface in an unlimited variety of shapes.

Although still in development, Lightpaper’s base is a mixture of ink and microscopic-sized LEDs that is added to a conductive layer. This layer is then sealed between two additional layers. This combination allows the LEDs to light up once a current is run through it.

The applications for Rohinni’s new product are immense. The company is looking into applications as far ranging as lighting up consumer products to providing automotive headlights. There are already number of companies working toward implementing the technology.

According to Rohinni, the development of Lightpaper is as influential as 3D printing in terms of potential. They claim market ready designs can emerge much more rapidly when factoring in Lightpaper with the product design process.

Developing new technology is not without its challenges. Ensuring the LEDs are evenly distributed is one of the challenges the company faces with developing Lightpaper. An uneven distribution can cause unwanted effects like shimmering. By closely controlling the placement of diodes the engineers at Rohinni hope to overcome this obstacle.

The closest competitor to Lightpaper is OLED, which is often used in flat screen televisions. In a market where slimmer is better, Lightpaper could have a competitive edge because of its incredibly thin form.

Rohinni is focused on securing markets in commercial and industrial space before opening up to home hobbyists. They expect to make Lightpaper technology available in the consumer market by the middle of 2015.

While we don’t know if Lightpaper will ultimately be a success, I, Dr. Bulb, am always intrigued to learn about the newest lighting technologies. If Lightpaper becomes a reality, who knows what applications it can be used for?

Photo Source: fastcolabs.com

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