LED technology can distinguish between food and deadly gases

Your smart device will soon be smarter with a new infrared light emitting diode (LED) that can be adjusted for different wavelengths – allowing your refrigerator to tell you when your food is gone and your phone to tell you. The Gucci bag is real.

The technology has been developed by the University of Melbourne, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the University of California, Berkeley and the Australian Council for Research Meta-Optical Systems Emission Center (TMOS). They have developed tools to identify gases that improve the safety of firefighters, miners, and military and local plumbers, including killers. His work appeared in the magazine, Nature.

Infrared (IR) monitors are common laboratory devices that can detect various materials by analyzing their infrared signatures. Just like AM radios, IR spectrometers can be adjusted to different wavelengths by analyzing a wide range of gas samples. However, these machines are huge and expensive and are often not practical to take from the laboratory to the field.

Our new technology connects thin phosphorus crystals to a flexible, plastic-like surface, which allows black phosphorus to bend in different wavelengths. Lots of materials, ”said Kenneth Krozier, a professor at the University of Melbourne. “This technology can be integrated into smartphones and become part of everyday use.

For example, when bacteria multiply in the meat, they release a variety of gases. The presence of these gases is a good indication that the meat is deteriorating and is no longer suitable for food.

“The refrigerator can send a signal that meat is being lost. When pointing to a handbag, it can indicate whether the bag is made of genuine leather or a cheap replacement, ”said Professor Cromzier, TMS Deputy Director.

Existing materials for IR photodetectors and light emitting devices can be difficult to produce, mainly due to the need for multiple interconnected crystal layers. This new black phosphorus technology requires only one layer to make the device flexible, giving it unique features when folded.

For his part, Professor Ali Javier of the University of California, Berkeley, said:

Importantly, the device is the thinnest, lightest weapon that can be placed on small planes, making it much safer for firefighters, miners, and military personnel to identify potentially dangerous gases. Flying such a drone in a building fire can tell firefighters what dangers they face and what equipment they need.

Low-cost technology can also be introduced into equipment for use by plumbers and construction managers.

“Our IR photo sensors can be integrated into the camera to see our phone’s eyes and to see gas leaks or emissions,” said Professor Crozier.

Kim H., Udin Esse, Lyon DH and others. Active Variable Spectrum Optometry in Black Phosphorus. Nature. 2021; 596 (7871) -232-237. doi: 10.1038 / s41586-021-03701-1

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