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LEDs Fool Quantum Mechanics

Photonics Spectra
Mar 2001
While developing a test to measure the formation of singlet and triplet excitons in electrically conductive plastics, researchers at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore and the University of Arizona in Tucson discovered a way to beat the predictions of physics. They observed that a sample of poly(phenylenevinylene) displayed a quantum efficiency of 42 percent when exposed to microwaves. According to theory, the upper limit is roughly 25 percent.

Reporting in the Jan. 25 issue of Nature, the researchers described how they monitored the response of pi-conjugated polymers and oligomers to laser stimulation in a magnetic field under microwave bombardment. They suggest that doping organic LEDs with iron and chemicals will produce the same effect.

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