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Discovery of non-toxic semiconductors with a direct band gap in the near-infrared

NIMS and the Tokyo Institute of Technology have jointly discovered that the chemical compound Ca3SiO is a direct transition semiconductor, making it a potentially promising infrared LED and infrared detector component. This compound—composed of calcium, silicon and oxygen—is cheap to produce and non-toxic. Many of the existing infrared semiconductors contain toxic chemical elements, such as cadmium and tellurium. Ca3SiO may be used to develop less expensive and safer near-infrared semiconductors.

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