Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Full-Color Single Nanowire Pixels for Projection Displays

Technology #7563

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Zetian Mi
Managed By
Joohee Kim
Licensing Specialist, Physical Sciences & Engineering 734-764-8202
Patent Protection
US Patent Pending

New materials for LEDs can provide many advantages for lighting, displays, and photonic applications on microchips. There has been much recent attention given towards organic LEDs, but these materials struggle with limited lifetimes, low efficiencies, and poor brightness. In contrast, Gallium Nitride-based quantum well LEDs are known to be bright, stable, and efficient, though devices made from these materials can usually emit just a single color. This report concerns a new means of creating LEDs that can emit light of controllable wavelengths across the visible spectrum.

LEDs with Full-Color Spectrum on a Single Chip

This technology describes a method for constructing Indium Gallium Nitride quantum dots contained in nanowires that can be used as LEDs. The report describes ways to control the nanowire placement and shape, which allows for control of the individual LED light emission. In this way, it is possible to construct a chip at the scale of a single micron that can emit across the full color spectrum. Such high level control at these small length scales was previously impossible. In addition, the nanowire geometry possesses a number of advantages on planar devices. Nanowires can handle higher current density and deliver higher power density combined with a higher light extraction efficiency.


  • LEDs for displays
  • Lighting
  • On-chip spectrometers


  • Control of emission spectrum
  • Ability to grow multiple color LED nanowires on a single chip
  • Nanowires can handle high current and power density
  • Improved light extraction efficiency