LED Emits and Detects Light

LED Emits and Detects Light
An innovative new LED able to both emit and detect light could open the door to contact-free phones powered by ambient light.

The team from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign created the LED from nanorods made up of three different kinds of semiconductor materials: one that emits and absorbs light, and two that control the electron flow. The LEDs can shift from absorbing light to detecting light three times faster than the standard LED refresh rate, which causes the display to appear as if it is always on, even as it performs different functions.

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