Dow Corning Electronics' LED materials group in Midland, Mich., today announced it has launched a program to streamline the integration of LED production processes using its silicone materials. LED makers use a variety of overmolding processes -- such as transfer, compression, and injection molding -- to form silicone resin-based materials into lenses and other optical elements that improve the lighting efficiency of LED devices. Working with a group of equipment partners, Dow Corning said it has developed optimized production processes easy for LED makers to implement in their factories. "With LED prices declining, LED makers are striving to increase manufacturing volume and lower production costs," said Billy Han, Dow Corning's global market manager for LED and light management products. "This new program is designed to help our customers address these twin challenges while remaining competitive and profitable through sustainable growth." Silicone materials' optical clarity and thermal stability makes them particularly useful in high-brightness LEDs and in high-reliability applications. Those qualities are helping silicone make inroads into a variety of fast-growing LED markets, including automotive interior lighting, cell phone flash modules, general lighting and especially emerging LCD backlights.