Lead Performer: OSRAM Opto-Semiconductors Inc. – Hillsboro, OR
Partners: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Columbia University
DOE Total Funding: $1,859,864
Project Term: October 1, 2021 – December 31, 2023

Funding Type: Buildings Energy Efficiency Frontiers & Innovation Technologies (BENEFIT)


Regulatory limitations on the use of cadmium (Cd) in light emitting diodes (LEDs) have shifted research focus to alternative materials, with III-V semiconductor quantum dots (QDs) being the leading candidate. At the same time, human-centric lighting designs are emerging that consider the melanopic benefits of the light spectrum. Both developments are increasingly important to SSL product design and can be addressed using Cd-free QD color converters with high reliability on LED packages.

Despite years of research and widespread commercial use of indium phosphide QDs in television displays, these materials cannot withstand the typical operating conditions of solid-state lighting devices. Incompatibility of these QDs with current barrier layers and encapsulation methods can be overcome with improved materials and synthetic methods. This project will focus on two thrusts:

  1. The synthesis of Cd-Free QD emitters with robust surface coordination chemistry that preserves a high photoluminescence quantum yield during barrier coating and encapsulation
  2. The deposition of next-generation barrier coatings that improve the environmental robustness

Using a combination of high-throughput robotic screening at the Molecular Foundry at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, novel synthesis and surface chemistry development at Columbia University, and industry leading expertise on QD encapsulation, LED fabrication, and high throughput reliability testing at OSRAM, the team will improve the on-chip reliability of QD converted human-centric lighting devices.


Environmentally robust Cd-free QDs targeted by the team can speed the adoption of energy-efficient human-centric lighting into the SSL market while improving the health benefits of LED lighting.


DOE Technology Manager: Wyatt Merrill, wyatt.merrill@ee.doe.gov   
Lead Performer: Joseph Treadway, OSRAM Opto-Semiconductors Inc.

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