Indium Blog

First Visible Light LED Turns 50!

It is hard to believe, but 50 years ago, on October 9th, the first visible light LED was demonstrated by Nick Holonyak, Jr. of GE Advanced Semiconductor Laboratory in Syracuse, NY (just down the road from Indium Corporation's global headquarters).  Fortunately, he did not listen to his critics who said mixing gallium arsenide and gallium phosphide would not work to make a visible light LED, because they were wrong!

According to Roberto Baldwin at, Holonyak predicted that LEDs would one day replace the incandescent light.  Today there are many efforts underway to make that happen.

Today, Indium Corporation is involved in several LED applications:

1) NanoFoil®:   High brightness LEDs use NanoFoil® to bond thermal pads to heat-sinking substrates.  By using the NanoFoil®, the standard reflow process (that can negatively impact brightness, color, and life time) is avoided.

2) Gallium Trichloride: This is used as the starting material for making gallium-based metal organic precursors, such as tri-methyl gallium, which are used in the LED industry.

3) Indium Trichloride Also used as a starting material, but for indium-based metal organic precursors such as tri-methyl indium.  These compounds are also used in the manufacture of LED lighting as well as batteries and other applications.

4) Engineered Solder Materials: Attaching an LED to a substrate can also be done by using a variety of specialty solders, including bismuth-based (low temperature) solder preforms or solder pastes.  We also have a variety of thermal solutions that can help dissipate the heat generated by the LED.  Flux-coated solder preforms provide solder and flux in a consistent volume, for use under larger LEDs to reduce or eliminate voiding. 

It may have taken 50 years to see the widespread adoption of this technology, but there is no doubt that it is here to stay!

Contact us for more information or visit and see our new web site.