Monday, May 10, 2010

Is night vision the next mobile must-have?

U. FLORIDA (US)—Engineers have developed a night vision imaging device that’s paper-thin, lightweight, and inexpensive to produce, making it a possible add-on to cell phone cameras—and even eyeglasses—once it is enlarged.

Standard night vision goggles use a photocathode to convert invisible infrared light photons into electrons. The electrons are accelerated under high voltage and driven into a phosphorous screen, producing greenish images of objects not visible to the eye in darkness.
The process requires thousands of volts and a cathode ray vacuum tube made of thick glass. That is why the goggles tend to be bulky and heavy.
So’s device replaces the vacuum tube with several layers of organic semiconductor thin film materials. The structure is simple: It consists of a photodetector connected in series with an LED.
When operating, infrared light photons are converted into electrons in the photodetector, and these photo-generated electrons are injected into the LED, generating visible light.

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