Microplasma technology could replace lamps

Using a sheet of aluminium foil and a collection of micro cavities filled with plasma, researchers have put together what could be the future of illumination.

The resulting product is just 125 microns thick and, when sealed with twin pieces of glass, creates a bulb that's only a couple of millimetres in width.

The new technology is produced by Eden Park Illumination and is described by the company as energy efficient, low key and, thanks to the small form factor, usable in a variety of different instances. Some of its suggested uses include retail displays, illuminated surfaces - like walls and floor panels - and interior architecture. In each of these situations, Eden Park suggests that the low profile and heat output of the microplasma bulbs allows them to be used in places where traditional electronics wouldn't be viable.

Another big part of this technology is its efficiency. The Register reports that while traditional fluorescent output at a 60-70 per cent efficiency and LEDs at about 80 per cent, the microplasma powered Eden Park Flat Lamp can hit as high as 90 per cent. This should equal out to not only lower heat output, but also reduced energy costs.