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Nano for the senses
Date:2/2/2010

This release is available in German.

A mystical glow emanates from the display case. A white light appears out of nowhere. And a light source is invisible at least at first glance. Only upon close examination does the source of the apparently supernatural illumination become visible: a light diode, smaller than a pinhead, passes through thousands of infinitesimal lens structures measuring only a few hundred nanometers, et voil: beaming white light.

"For a long time, producing white light with no peripheral color effects was an almost unsolvable technical problem," explains Dr. Michael Popall of the Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC in Wurzburg. "White light is produced by mixing the complementary colors red, green and blue. Undesirable refraction occurs with conventional beamer technology, resulting in colored streaks on the periphery of the projection." This technology which researchers will present from February 17 to 19 at nano tech 2010 in Tokyo, Hall 3.03 Booth F-14-1 delivers not only brilliant color, but also pure white: "The tiniest of red, blue and green light diodes on the most condensed space produce the light, which is then bundled and homogenized by the nano-structured ORMOCER optics," illustrates Popall, who was deeply involved in the development of the material.

"ORMOCERs are an ideal material for the production of microoptics," concludes the researcher. "They are not only superior light conductors, but are also easy to process not as brittle as glass, and not as pliant as polymers." In fact, ORMOCERs are a hybrid of inorganic and organic components that are networked at the molecular level. This material makes it possible to realize things inconceivable even a couple of years ago: Ultra-flat and ultra-small optics for micro-cameras or beamers that fit into a pants pocket. The design of the new ORMOCER optics
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Contact: Dr. Michael Popall
michael.popall@isc.fraunhofer.de
49-931-410-0522
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert

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