I really don’t have much serious comment about this, yet, because I can only get the synopsis of the paper, and the press article surrounding this. But, it appears that they are claiming a perpetual motion machine in the making. Not only that, but an air conditioner as well!!!
I’ll give excepts from both……..
The device – which has a conventional efficiency of greater than 200% – behaves as a kind of optical heat pump that converts lattice vibrations into infrared photons, cooling its surroundings in the process. The possibility of such a device was first predicted in 1957, but a practical version had proved impossible to create until now.
…….there was no barrier in principle to an LED being more than 100% efficient, in which case it would actually cool its surroundings.
Obeys the second law
…….Lead researcher Parthiban Santhanam of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology explains that the process is perfectly consistent with the second law of thermodynamics…..”The most counterintuitive aspect of this result is that we don’t typically think of light as being a form of heat. Usually we ignore the entropy and think of light as work,” he explains. “If the photons didn’t have entropy (i.e. if they were a form of work, rather than heat), this would break the second law. Instead, the entropy shows up in the outgoing photons, so the second law is satisfied.”
The researchers chose a light-emitting diode with a small band gap, and applied such small voltages that it acted like a normal resistor. With each halving of the voltage, they reduced the electrical power by a factor of 4, even though the number of electrons, and thus the light power emitted, dropped by only a factor of 2. Decreasing the input power to 30 picowatts, the team detected nearly 70 picowatts of emitted light. The extra energy comes from lattice vibrations, so the device should be cooled slightly, as occurs in thermoelectric coolers.
These initial results provide too little light for most applications. However, heating the light emitters increases their output power and efficiency, meaning they are like thermodynamic heat engines, except they come with the fast electrical control of modern semiconductor devices.
Now, this science babel is going to take me a while to decipher. But, halving the voltage, in the world I play in, halves the energy as well. Volts * Amps = Watts. So, I don’t know what they’re talking about. But, they probably don’t, either. Can any of my sciency friends articulate how halving the voltage doesn’t equate to halving the electrical power? I keep bumping into Ohm’s law. ….. or did they falsify that as well as making a perpetual motion/air conditioner machine?
In pretend world, this is great news! We no longer need to have power plants! Just get a bunch of LEDs, fire an electric charge with a hand crank into them and put some photo cells on the receiving of some fiber optic cable and then have the charge go back into the LEDs!!!! Done! It would prolly ‘splode within a few minutes because of the energy overload. But, on a hot summer day, think of how much cooler things could get with a 200% efficiency!
They provide too little light, so just make them on a larger scale!!! We can go from picowatts to megawatts!!!!
Sonnofa……..!!! Color me skeptical.