Red LED inventor feels work was bypassed in Nobel Prize decision

URBANA - A retired University of Illinois physicist who worked with others to invent the world's first visible LED is questioning whether his work was ignored when two Japanese and a Japanese-born American scientists were awarded with a Nobel Prize on Tuesday.

Nick Holonyak Jr., 85, invented the world's first red light-emitting diode in 1962.  Some of his colleagues have said the invention deserved the Nobel Prize.  Holonyak never won the award, and never stated that he deserves it.

However, Holonyak said the decision to bypass his work was "insulting," adding that award winners' blue LED would not have been possible without his invention.

Delaina Amos, professor at the University of Louisville, says both the blue LED and Holonyak's red LED deserve the award.

LEDs have made a wide range of technologies possible, such as DVDs and fiber-optic networks.
Current Conditions