From bionic contact lenses to Li-Fi communications
In July a security weakness in the startup electronics company LIFX smart LED light bulbs was revealed by U.K. based research company Context Information Security which discovered the security vulnerability of the LIFX light bulb but noted, since this attack works on the 802.15.4 6LoWPAN wireless mesh network, an attacker would need to be within wireless range, ~30 meters, of a vulnerable LIFX bulb to perform an attack.
Mercedes Benz revealed in June that the company’s 2015 Mercedes-Benz CLS model will for the first time feature Multibeam LED headlights which have 24 individually controlled LEDs that adjust 100 times every second from four control units and the camera. The high-resolution precision LED modules, each with 24 individually controlled high-performance LEDs, will automatically illuminate the road with precision-controlled distribution of bright light without dazzling other road users.
In October we reported that the Fraunhofer Institute for Photonic Microsystems IPMS in Dresden had developed communication modules that can wirelessly transfer data at a speed of up to 1 Gigabit per second over a distance of up to 10 meters.
In February we revealed that Osram had been named as the system partner for the first production vehicle in the world equipped with a laser light. German automotive manufacturer BMW put a laser-equipped BMW i8 car on the road in the second half of 2014.
The BMW i8 was the first plug-in hybrid sports car with the consumption and emission values of a compact car.
At electronica, LED manufacturer Everlight introduced what the company claimed to be the world’s first colour-temperature tunable LEDs in a simple COB (chip on board) package.
Ultra High Definition also known as 4K (boasting 3840×2160pixels at either 60 or 120 frames per second) was in pretty much every announcement at the NAB Show which took place in the Spring in Las Vegas. The question was: are consumers ready to fork out for a 4K upgrade yet?
The Finally Light Bulb Company unveiled what the company claimed was the first energy-efficient A type light bulb that makes use of induction technology to replicate the warm and reassuring glow of the now-banned incandescent bulbs.
The 60 Watt, 800-lumen Finally light bulb incorporates the same classic design of an incandescent bulb and provides the energy-efficiency consumers demand and produces light quality that LED and CFL bulbs cannot deliver at an affordable price.
Claiming a place on the podium in thrid place is Cree, Inc. who claimed a breakthrough in lighting-class LED performance with the SC5 Technology Platform which is powering the next generation of lighting with the introduction of Extreme High Power (XHP) LEDs. The new class of LEDs claims to reduce system costs by up to 40 percent in most lighting applications.
The runner-up for 2014 is a story about how the Danish capital city Copenhagen is rolling out a large-scale pilot project featuring smart LED lights with the aim to save money, cut carbon emissions and even alert police about suspicious activities.
And finally, the top story for 2014 obviously caught everyone’s eyes.
University of Washington researchers demonstrated that by using a LED one-third of a millimeter in diameter it was feasible to stream hands-free information across a contact lens.
The story generated three times as many click-throughs compared with this year’s runner up. An eyewatering success.