Venture capitalists are swarming around firms developing LED (light-emitting diode) and similar lighting technologies beyond their current applications in calculators and cell phones, the San Jose Mercury News reports. Investors see new sources, using one-sixth of the power of incandescent bulbs, as environmentally friendly replacements for indoor and outdoor lighting.
Venture-capital investments in new lighting technologies topped $100 million in the first quarter of 2008, third only to biofuels and solar power. "The way we light things today uses 25 percent of our energy in the United States," one investor said. "The opportunity there is to switch to a much more efficient way of using the electricity."