What is an LED?

A light-emitting diode (LED) is a semi conductor device that emits visible light when an electric current passes through it. The light is not particularly bright, but in most LED's it is monochromatic, occuring at a single wavelength. The output from an LED can range from red (at a wavelength of approximately 700 nanometers) to blue-violet (about 400 nanometers). Some LED's emit infrared (IR) energy (830 nanometers or longer); such a device is known as an infrared-emitting diode (IRED).

An LED or IRED consists of two elements of processed material called P-type semiconductors and N-type semiconductors. These two elements are placed in direct contact, forming a region called the P-N junction. In this respect, the LED or IRED resembles most other diode types, but there are important differences. The LED or IRED has a transparent package, allowing visible or IR energy to pass through. Also, the LED or IRED has a large PN-junction area whose shape is tailored to the application.

Benefits of LED's and IREDs, compared with incandescent and flourescent illuminating devices, include:

- ​Low power requirement. Most types can be operated with battery power supplies.

​- High efficiency. ​Most of the power supplied to an LED or IRED is converted into radiation in the desired form, with minimal heat production.

​- Long Life. When properly installed, an LED or IRED can function for decades.

Feel free to leave any question, comments or suggestions in the comment section below. For more articles on new trends, latest news, installation tips in LED space, check our blog for weekly posts as well as our Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, or LinkedIn. As always we here at Oorjam.com are willing to step up to the plate to answer your everyday lighting questions and challenges.