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Patent highlights

16 Mar 2004

The pick of this week’s patent applications including a way to increase the efficiency of an LED.

•  Title: Coated LED with improved efficiency
Applicant: Gelcore, LLC, US
International application number: WO 2004/021461
US firm Gelcore has designed an LED which it says has an increased efficiency. The design features a light-emitting chip and a hemispherical lens which is positioned a set distance from the chip. The idea involves coating the lens with a uniformly-thick layer of a fluorescent phosphor, which converts some of the radiation emitted by the chip into visible light. Crucially, the authors claim that the surface area of the lens should be at least ten times that of the LED chip. “For increased efficiency, the reflector and submount can also be coated with phosphor to further reduce internal absorption,” say the authors.

•  Title: Improved photomask having an intermediate inspection film layer
Applicant: Photronics, Inc, US
International application number: WO 2004/021082
Patent application WO 2004/021082 describes a way to improve the manufacture of the photomask blanks and to detect defects in the photomasks after processing. The application states that a photomask blank should contain one or more intermediate layers that have a higher extinction coefficient at the inspection tool wavelength than the exposure tool wavelength. According to the authors, the layers are made from materials that absorb a sufficient amount of light to meet the optical requirements of inspection tools while at the same time transmit sufficient light to meet the requirement of exposure tools.

•  Title: Method and device for the non-invasive determination of the temperature in biological tissue
Applicant: Medizinisches Laserzentrum Lübeck, GmbH, Germany
International application number: WO 2004/019774
Inventors in Germany are attempting to patent an instrument that allegedly monitors the temperature at the back of the eye during therapeutic laser treatment. The instrument looks for changes in the fluorescence signature emitted by the tissue. Any changes are compared to reference data and the laser radiation is varied depending on the result. The inventors say the fluorescence signature can be associated with the tissue’s natural autofluorescence or to that of an injected dye.

•  Title: Laminated glazing panel
Applicant: Pilkington, plc, UK
International application number: WO 04/009349
UK-based glass specialist Pilkington is trying to patent its method of producing glass which contains LEDs. The panel is made up of a series of LEDs mounted on a flexible circuit board, which is then laminated between two glass panels. The company says that the finished laminated glazing panel should be less than 8 mm thick and can be used in windows, doors or screens.

Jacqueline Hewett is technology editor on Optics.org and Opto & Laser Europe magazine.

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