Soviet KL101 LED (2L101A KL101A)  
Written by AnubisTTP on 2017-03-02  


This rather primitive looking device is a KL101 LED, an early solid state light source manufactured in the Soviet Union. Electronics lore states that the KL101 was one of the first LEDs mass produced in the in the Soviet Union, a believable statement as the KL101 uses a green-yellow silicon carbide die as it's emitter. Silicon carbide of this type was typically only used in the dawn of the LED industry due to it's dim light output. The most noteworthy thing about the KL101 however is not its chemistry but its packaging; unlike most early Soviet LEDs which were packaged in robust metal can enclosures, the KL101 is merely a cube of SiC material pressed between two wires and drizzled with epoxy. Though the light output is quite dim, the KL101 is brighter than General Electric's SSL-1 silicon carbide LED, and has a similar light output to the Monsanto MV2.

The Soviet Union also made a military variant of the KL101, the 2L101 LED, which had enhanced properties and reliability.


Soviet KL101 LED, normal operation. Electronics lore has it that this is one of the earliest Soviet LEDs.

This tiny LED contains a gren-yellow die made out of silicon carbide.

A related device is the 2L101A LED, a military grade version of the KL101.

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