The junction temperature of red (AlGaInP), green (GaInN), blue (GaInN), and ultraviolet (GaInN) light-emitting diodes (LEDs) is measured using the temperature coefficients of the diode forward voltage and of the emission-peak energy. The junction temperature increases linearly with DC current as the current is increased from 10 mA to 100 mA. For comparison, the emission-peak-shift method is also used to measure the junction temperature. The emission-peak-shift method is in good agreement with the forward-voltage method. The carrier temperature is measured by the high-energy-slope method, which is found to be much higher than the lattice temperature at the junction. Analysis of the experimental methods reveals that the forward-voltage method is the most sensitive and its accuracy is estimated to be ± 3°C. The peak position of the spectra is influenced by alloy broadening, polarization, and quantum confined Stark effect thereby limiting the accuracy of the emission-peak-shift method to ±15°C. A detailed analysis of the temperature dependence of a tri-chromatic white LED source (consisting of three types of LEDs) is performed. The analysis reveals that the chromaticity point shifts towards the blue, the color-rendering index (CRI) decreases, the color temperature increases, and the luminous efficacy decreases as the junction temperature increases. A high CRI > 80 can be maintained, by adjusting the LED power so that the chromaticity point is conserved.
The performance characteristics of white light sources based on a multiple-LED approach, in particular dichromatic and trichromatic sources are analyzed in detail. Figures of merit such as the luminous efficacy, color temperature, and color rendering capabilities are provided for a wide range of primary emission wavelengths. Spectral power density functions of LEDs are assumed to be thermally and inhomogeneously broadened to a full width at half maximum of several <i>kT</i>, in agreement with experimental results. A gaussian line shape is assumed for each of the emission bands. It is shown that multi-LED white light sources have the potential for luminous efficacies greater than 400 lm/W (dichromatic source) and color rendering indices of greater than 90 (trichromatic source). Contour maps for the color rendering indices and luminous efficacies versus three wavelengths are given.