Light-emitting wallpaper. Photo by T3 magazine.
One of the most intriguing developments in material technology is the interchange between traditional material classifications. There are now plastics that behave like metal, wood that behaves like plastic, glass that behaves like fabric, and so on. It gets really interesting when materials assume the functionality of building systems. In the lighting arena, for example, new low-energy technologies promise to replace conventional bulbs and wires with emissive and non-emissive materials. UK-based company Lomox Ltd. recently announced its development of a light-emitting wallpaper, claiming that this material could replace household light bulbs by 2012. Seeking to curb domestic carbon emissions associated with artificial illumination, Lomox Ltd. says that its OLED-based flexible screen panels will reduce conventional energy consumption by 60%.