Resurrection of Old Tungsten Light Bulbs, Up to 700% more efficient than LED Lights Bulbs

Say Hello to your old friend  incandescent light bulbs because according to scientists at MIT, there is a way to make them up to 700% more efficient than LED lights.

New technological innovations in nanotechnology bringing the old warm light of incandescent light bulbs back to into our homes. LED lights replaced the old incandescent lights in our house because of their higher efficient and durability. But let’s accept the fact that they are a bit too bright and there are numerous reports of its negative impacts on our sleeping cycles.  Research published on 11 January 2016 by the Nature Nanotechnology argues that there is a way to save the wasted energy of incandescent light bulbs. According to scientist Ognjen Ilic, Peter Bermel, Gang Chen, John D. Joannopoulos, Ivan Celanovic & Marin Soljačić, you can achieve this by placing cold-side nanophotonic interference around the tungsten wire (wire inside the bulb, through which an electric current is passed, which gives the light) you can actually harness the heat wasted energy and turn it into light source. Scientist argues that applications of this technology are not limited to being a light source, the possibilities are endless but it’s too early to speculate.

How does it work?



Above is the demonstration of how the system will work. On  figure C , you can see the plates placed around the tungsten wiring. The plates are optimized to reflect infrared light which captures the infrared light inside as seen red arrow hitting the plates,meanwhile, normal light is transmitted just like a  normal light bulb would with a  wide range of angles as seen as the green arrows going out, and the plate becomes a light source. Below is the picture provided by the scientist, a working incandescent light bulb with nanostructured plates.


Source: M.I.T

Let’s look at them from an efficiency point of view.

The old regular light bulbs have a 2.5 % luminous efficiency on average, LED is 5% to 20%. The theoretical limit for a white LED with phosphorescence color mixing is 38.1–43.9% according to .The new nanoplate light bulbs have a 40% efficiency matching the florescent lights we use in commercial buildings. This is up to 700%  more efficient that commercial LED, very exciting news if we can hurry up and mass produce these before it’s too late.  I have no idea how much these new bulbs will cost, making those nanoplates could be very expensive at the moment, but the future is very bright.

The Original article is posted on Nature Nanotechnology, it is behind a paywall.

Check out our Guide on How to Lower your Carbon Footprint here.

Leave a Reply