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Salmon garnish points the way to green electronics
Date:9/13/2007

Professor Andrew Steckl, a leading expert in light-emitting diodes, is intensifying the properties of LEDs by introducing biological materials, specifically salmon DNA.

Electrons move constantly think of tiny particles with a negative charge and attention deficit disorder. It is through the movement of these electrons that electric current flows and light is created.

Ohio Eminent Scholar Andrew Steckl is one of the world's leading experts in photonics. (Photo by Dottie Stover)

Steckl is an Ohio Eminent Scholar in UCs Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He believed that if the electrons mobility could be manipulated, then new properties could be revealed.

In considering materials to introduce to affect the movement of the electrons, Steckl evaluated the source of materials with an eye to supply, especially materials that do not harm the environment.

Biological materials have many technologically important qualities electronic, optical, structural, magnetic, says Steckl. But certain materials are hard for to duplicate, such as DNA and proteins. He also wanted a source that was widely available, would not have to be mined, and was not subject to any organization or countrys monopoly. His answer?

Salmon sperm.

Salmon sperm is considered a waste product of the fishing industry. Its thrown away by the ton, says Steckl with a smile. Its natural, renewable and perfectly biodegradable. While Steckl is currently using DNA from salmon, he thinks that other animal or plant sources might be equally useful. And he points out that for the United States, the green device approach takes advantage of something in which we continue to be a world leader agriculture.

Steckl is pursuing this research in collaboration with the Air Force Research Laboratory. The research was featured recently in such premier scientific publications as the inaugural issue of naturephotonics and on the cover
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Contact: Wendy Hart Beckman
wendy.beckman@uc.edu
513-556-1826
University of Cincinnati
Source:Eurekalert

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