Nick Holonyak

LED

Chances are, you’re enjoying another innovation from Champaign-Urbana right now — the LED. University of Illinois professor Nick Holonyak, Jr. laid the groundwork for the modern LED, lighting up much of the technology we use today.

NICK HOLONYAK

NICK HOLONYAK

NICK HOLONYAK
NICK HOLONYAK

FATHER OF THE LED

You might need to make a cup of coffee and take a seat, because you’ve got a lot to thank-you notes owed to UIUC professor (and alumnus) Nick Holonyak, Jr. He’s the man responsible for the cost- and energy-saving technology we now call LED lights. Illuminated grocery store aisles, traffic lights, street lamps, many of the newer lights in your house — they all had a start here in CU.

Holonyak was onto something when he invented a light that uses around 85 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs, produces less heat, is more durable and has less of an environmental impact. Ten of Professor Holonyak’s doctoral students have carried on his legacy, working with Philips to develop new uses for LED technology. Sound too good to be true? Well, look around you — Holonyak’s work is everywhere!

 

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