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Craford Awarded IEEE Edison Medal

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George Craford, solid-state lighting fellow at Lumileds, was selected to receive the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ (IEEE) Edison Medal for his lifetime of contributions to the development and commercialization of visible LED materials and devices.

George CrafordCraford is best known for his invention of the yellow LED in 1972. He then led the development of increasingly brighter red, orange and amber LEDs. In 1979, Craford began work at Hewlett-Packard, where his team pioneered the development of AlInGaP LEDs using metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD). At the time, MOCVD was a relatively expensive lower volume process and had not been utilized for the high-volume commercial production of LEDs. AlInGaP LEDs increased the performance of red and yellow LEDs by >10×. Craford’s team continued to achieve technology breakthroughs in AlInGaP LEDs, eventually reaching 100 lm/W.

“Not only was George responsible for substantial breakthroughs in technology, but with his team, [he] ensured that the technology could be reliably and cost- effectively manufactured,” said Mark Karol, board chair of the 2017 IEEE Awards.

Craford’s later work focused on making white LED light cost-effective for retail, office, architectural, outdoor and industrial lighting markets. In the early 2000s, his team’s work enabled commercialization of the first high-power LEDs in the 10- to 20-lumen range. Such LEDs contributed to the creation of the first LED bulbs to meet the high-efficiency and long-lifecycle requirements to win the U.S. Department of Energy’s L Prize for a 60-W-equivalent LED bulb.

“George has terrific instinct for what will work, but at the same time he’s got that practical engineering side that drives a solution until it produces the best results,” said Jy Bhardwaj, chief technology officer of Lumileds.

Craford is an IEEE life fellow and a member of the National Academy of Engineering. He has received numerous awards including the 2002 National Medal of Technology and the 2015 U.S. National Academy of Engineering Charles Stark Draper Prize.

Photonics Spectra
Jul 2017
BusinessGeorge CrafordLumiledsIEEEInstitute of Electrical and Electronics EngineersEdison MedalawardsAmericaslight speed

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