Enlightened organic chemistry

General Electric has announced a new approach to the manufacture of organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) that could help the technology fulfill one its early promises as very low-energy lighting. OLEDs are thin, organic materials sandwiched between two electrodes, which illuminate when an electrical charge is applied. They could represent the next evolution in lighting products, says GE. The company is rolling out a new manufacturing process that essentially prints the OLED on to a substrate like a printing press produces printed pages from a roll of paper. "Researchers have long dreamed of making OLEDs using a newspaper-printing like roll-to-roll process," said Anil Duggal, manager of GE's Advanced Technology Program in Organic Electronics, "Now we've shown that it is possible."