You’d better not ignore Russian Prior Art search – says New Scientist magazine

LED developed in Russia in 1920s

By Nick Farrell
The Inquirer

CLAIMS THAT the LED was invented by four independent American research groups in 1962 are false, according to New Scientist magazine.

The mag’s hacks have found that the LED was invented by a Russian genius around forty years earlier.

Oleg Vladimirovich Losev was a radio technician who noticed that diodes used in radio receivers emitted light when current was passed through them. In 1927, he published details in a Russian journal of the first ever LED.

Details of Losev’s invention have been dug up by Nikolay Zheludev, at the University of Southampton.

It is not as if the discoveries were locked in Russia and never escaped. Losev also published on his discoveries in German and British journals where they were ignored. More than sixteen papers written between 1924 and 1930 he comprehensively detailed the function of his LED.

He used Einstein’s quantum theory to explain the way electrons dropping in energy produced the light without releasing heat. When he wrote to the man himself, but Einstein didn’t reply. In 1927 he Losev filed a patent for a ‘light relay’ that used his devices ‘for fast telegraphic and telephone communication, transmission of images and other applications…’ None of his work was picked up and Losev died of hunger in 1942 during the siege of Leningrad (aka St.Petersburg), at the age of 39.

Zheludev discovered that in November 1941, Losev tried to get a paper based on a discovery that using semiconductors, a three-terminal system may be constructed analogous to a vacuum triode. Zheludev thinks that he may have invented the transistor.

Download Zheludev’s full paper here.

Source: New Scientist article

Russian Prior Art search

Some of Oleg Losev’s patents (to get full text copies and/or translation of these patents, please contact

Light relay (Soviet patent SU12191, 1927.02.28) 12191-1.jpg
Light relay (Soviet patent SU25657, 1931.02.26) 25657.jpg
Geterodine radio receiver (Soviet patent SU467, 1923.12.18) 467-1.jpg
Device For Locating Oscillating Points of Contact Detector (Soviet patent SU472, 1923.12.18) 472-1.jpg
A method to Generate Endless Oscillations (Soviet patent SU996, 1922.02.21) 996-1.jpg
A method to control reoscillation in crystadine receivers (Soviet patent SU4904, 1926.03.29) 4904.jpg
A method of prevention of occurrence of electric fluctuations in reception contours of intralamps transformers of low frequency (Soviet patent SU11101, 1927.02.28) 11101-1.jpg
Electrolytes rectifier (Soviet patent SU28548, 1930.11.27) 28548.jpg
A method for frequency transformation (Soviet patent SU29875, 1926.03.24) 29875-1.jpg
A method to produce photoresistor (Soviet patent SU32067, 1933.05.08) 32067.jpg
A method to produce photoresistor (Soviet patent SU39883, 1934.01.21) 39883-1.jpg
A contact rectifier (Soviet patent SU33231, 1931.04.29) 33231-1.jpg

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One Response to “You’d better not ignore Russian Prior Art search – says New Scientist magazine”

  1. May the starving American Engineers be supported in their inventions, until they become rich and famous, commensurately with their IP contributions. This will help, maintain, and grow USA GDP above 14T$. Think of our children and gross national debt. Thank you!

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