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To Make a More Efficient LED, Scientists Look to Fireflies

 A really close (scanning-electron-microscope close) look at some fireflies led scientists to a new refractive design that could dramatically increase efficiency in LEDs.

Two studies, published yesterday in Optics Express, describe the shape of scales on the abdomen of fireflies, and an experiment that placed similar structures on LEDs, brightening their output by 55 percent.

“We refer to the edge structures as having a factory roof shape,” researcher Annick Bay told EurekAlert. “The tips of the scales protrude and have a tilted slope, like a factory roof.”

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