Osram Opto Semiconductors infrared chip achieves 72% efficiency at 100 mA

Feb. 21, 2013
The 1 mm2 infrared chip prototype has achieved efficiency of up to 72% at 100 mA using thin-film technology.

The 1 mm2 infrared chip prototype has achieved efficiency of up to 72% at 100 mA using thin-film technology. It produces 930 mW at 850 nm from a current of 1 A. It is designed for infrared (IR) illumination in surveillance and use with CCTV cameras, and as pre-crash sensors and sources for night vision systems.
Osram Opto Semiconductors
Sunnyvale, CA


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New 1 mm2 infrared chip has 72% efficiency for powerful IR illumination

New prototype infrared thin-film chip sets record for Osram

The new 1 mm2 infrared chip prototype from Osram Opto Semiconductors has achieved a new record with an efficiency of up to 72 percent at 100 milliamps using thin-film technology. At 930 milliwatts from an operating current of 1 amp, its light output under laboratory conditions is 25 percent higher than that of the chips currently available on the market, which means that future infrared LEDs can be made even more energy-efficient.

The efficiency, known as wall plug efficiency (WPE), indicates the ratio of the radiated power to the electrical input power. It was measured at room temperature at a DC current of up to 1 amp. With a wavelength of 850 nanometers, the chip has been designed specifically for infrared illumination applications.

The results from the Osram R&D laboratory in Regensburg have created a new milestone. The prototype 1 mm2 infrared chip has a high quantum efficiency that remains around 65 percent up to 1 amp. The 850 nanometer wavelength of the chip prototype is perfect for infrared illumination, particularly for surveillance tasks and use with CCTV cameras. There are also potential safety applications in the automotive sector, such as precrash sensors and illumination sources for night vision systems.

"The way in which the efficiency and brightness have been increased can be transferred from 850 nanometers to other wavelengths," said Markus Bröll, Project Manager for the development of IRED chips at Osram Opto Semiconductors in Regensburg. "This means that it will be possible to create highly energy-efficient solutions for infrared lighting in the future." Fewer components will be needed in multi-chip applications, he added, saving both money and energy.

The results of this development work are now being implemented stage by stage. The new chip is expected to go into series production by the middle of 2013.


OSRAM GmbH of Munich, Germany is one of the two leading light manufacturers in the world. Its subsidiary, OSRAM Opto Semiconductors GmbH in Regensburg (Germany), offers its customers solutions based on semiconductor technology for lighting, sensor and visualization applications. Osram Opto Semiconductors has production sites in Regensburg (Germany) and Penang (Malaysia). Its headquarters for North America is in Sunnyvale (USA), and for Asia in Hong Kong. Osram Opto Semiconductors also has sales offices throughout the world. For more information go to www.osram-os.com.


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