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2012-02-21
Applications, design and technology news from across the industry
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Commentary: LED Industry Buzzing at Strategies in Light
 
... The leading annual US exhibition and conference for the broader LED industry supply chain, Strategies in Light, took place this week, and there is no doubt we're seeing a lively industry. Revenue growth at the packaged LED industry has been moderated a bit by the overall economic climate, but...

View the full story at the bottom of the current news page, or if this page is a back issue, go here...

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Solid State Lighting Design is here to serve the information needs of lighting designers, specifiers, and decision makers, along with luminaire designers, lighting system integrators and lighting subsystem developers with application, product and market news updates for this rapidly evolving technology. Our readership also includes LED packagers, technology enablers and service companies seeking the answers to how best to meet their customers' needs.

Solid state lighting promises to create unprecedented changes in what we can do with light. Simultaneously, it will deliver on a promise of massive global energy savings and access to useful nighttime lighting that has not been conveniently available to nearly 2 billion people around the world. We're glad to have you join us in the revolution!


Commentary...
LED Industry Buzzing at Strategies in Light

 
... The leading annual US exhibition and conference for the broader LED industry supply chain, Strategies in Light, took place this week, and there is no doubt we're seeing a lively industry. Revenue growth at the packaged LED industry has been moderated a bit by the overall economic climate, but...

View the full story at the bottom of the current news page, or if this is a back issue, go here...

Cree Partners with League of Green Embassies
SSLDesign News Staff

February 21, 2012...Cree, Inc. has participated in a series of energy efficiency renovations across U.S. Embassies in Vienna, Rome, Berlin, Madrid, and Lisbon. Cree's installation of interior and exterior LED lighting is part of a program of the Alliance to Save Energy and The League of Green Embassies, a U.S. Department of State initiative promoting international cooperation in energy efficiency and clean technology. 



The range of LED lighting products being installed at each embassy varies according to its unique requirements. The energy savings for these installations is between 45 and 76 percent compared to the old lighting. Older, energy-wasting lighting is being replaced with energy-efficient LED lighting in security lighting, indoor lighting, area lighting, walkway lighting and parking lot and roadway lighting. 


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The Southern Co-operative installs LED lights from Vision Accendo
SSLDesign News Staff

February 21, 2012...The Southern Co-operative based in Portsmouth, Hampshire with over 157 retail stores trading across 10 counties in the South of England wanted to improve its lighting quality and save electricity. In July 2010 Vision Accendo, LED Lighting specialist based in Eastleigh in Hampshire. in conjunction with IDC Electrical and dci Refrigeration, worked with The Southern Co-operative to investigate new LED lighting technologies to reducing carbon emissions while improving the lighting quality in their stores.


From site surveys at selected outlets, Vision Accendo created a lighting design using only LED lights. Vision Accendo had to select suitable lighting for a variety of settings, including open retail spaces, food display, and refrigeration units, and outdoor areas. The objective, besides reducing power costs, was to maintain existing lux levels in each store while improving color rendering. SSL Design PageTwo members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

WAC Lighting Introduces Brittany Opalescent Glass Flower LED Pendant
SSLDesign News Staff

February 21, 2012...WAC Lighting of Garden City, New York USA, has introduced a skillfully crafted, stunning glass art form, the Brittany, LED pendant. It features layers of classic Italian opaline glass that blossom into a dramatic opalescent flower.  Gorgeous hues of amber, gold and milky blue come alive when illuminated.

Brittany operates with energy efficient LEDs to for a life of up to 50,000 hours.  The LEDme® model uses 12 volts and 3.4 watts with a color temperature of 3000K and a CRI (color rendering index) of 80. In addition, low voltage halogen and line voltage xenon options are available.

Designer hardware finishes of the pendant luminaire include Brushed Nickel, Chrome, Dark Bronze and Platinum. Brittany operates with the company's line of low and line voltage track and rail systems, as well as a canopy mount using the Quick Adjust™ Canopy that allows suspension cable to accommodate a varied ceiling heights and applications. Brittany, like other WAC Lighting products, is backed by a 5-year warranty.

Chevron Gas Station Illuminated with Cree LED Lighting
SSLDesign News Staff

February 16, 2012...A Chevron gas station and ExtraMile food Market in Beaverton, Oregon USA recently underwent extensive eco-renovations, including the installation of interior and exterior LED lighting by Cree, Inc. Cree LED luminaires under the exterior canopy and inside the convenience store fully illuminate the Highland Chevron, which was rebuilt from the ground up. According to Cree, the LED luminares save an estimated 70 percent over the old non-LED fixtures.

Bob Barman, owner of the Highland Chevron says that the indoor and outdoor LED lighting allows the station to consume a third less energy than typical 24-hour c-stores and petroleum stations. Barman estimates that the new Cree luminaires should provide payback in 2.5 years. The Barman anticipates that the Beaverton Chevron will have more than a decade of virtually maintenance-free operation from the Cree luminaires. SSL Design PageTwo members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Tulsa, Oklahoma District to Get Amerlux Street Lights with Bridgelux LEDs
SSLDesign News Staff

February 16, 2012...The City of Tulsa successfully collaborated with luminaire manufacturer, Amerlux, and LED manufacturer, Bridgelux, to install LED street lighting from Amerlux as part of the restoration of Tulsa’s historic Brady district.  About 200 Amerlux outdoor luminaires based on Bridgelux LED arrays are planned to illuminate the walkways around the new Driller Stadium and park. Sixty-four of the street lights were installed in 2011 with the remaining street lights slated for installation this year. The new LED lighting is expected to save the City of Tulsa thousands of dollars in reduced energy and maintenance costs, compared to the conventional High Intensity Discharge (HID) streetlights used in other areas of the city.

“The collaboration between the City and its lighting manufacturer and supplier delivered a flexible, energy- and cost-efficient solution that significantly improved the quality and longevity of Tulsa’s outdoor lighting,” said Paul Strizek, planning and contracts manager for the City of Tulsa. “Together we delivered on the City’s commitment to reduce our energy use, increase sustainability and offer our citizens a better quality of light.” SSL Design PageTwo members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Lemnis Lighting Prices 200-lm LED Replacement Bulbs Under $5

February 16, 2012...Lemnis Lighting of San Francisco, California USA, announced the debut of three lines of its popular Pharox LED replacement bulbs. The new lines of Pharox replacement bulbs target residential and commercial customers. The company points out that its 200-lumen Pharox BLU, breaks the $5 price point with a suggested retail price of $4.95 sold exclusively through pharox-led.com.

Lemnis claims that all three product lines, the Pharox BLU, Pharox XL and Pharox PRO - offer customers what they need from an LED bulb without piling on added cost for features that aren't necessary for their situation. Lemnis also introduced the and Pharox BLU 300 at $6.95.

Warner Philips, Co-Founder of Lemnis Lighting stated, "Pharox LEDs are well-designed and now in range of every American's wallet, with a pay-back time of 6 months to 2 years and an expected lifetime of more than 10 years!" SSL Design PageTwo members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Finelite Introduces 10-Year Product Warranty for Recessed LED Luminaires
SSLDesign News Staff

February 16, 2012...Finelite Inc., a commercial building lighting system producer, unveiled a new, 10-year warranty for its High Performance Recessed LED (HPR-LED) luminaire collection. The company asserts that its HPR-LED luminaires offer twice the industry standard for lifetime operating hours, and the warranty doubles the standard coverage terms for optimal performance over the extended lifetime of the luminaire.

"This customer-friendly 10-year warranty demonstrates our absolute confidence in the robust luminaire design of HPR-LED, and our commitment to make lighting design a key driver for energy efficient buildings," said Terry Clark, Finelite chairman and chief technology officer. "This is yet another assurance that our quality indoor LED luminaires are solidly backed by service levels Finelite customers have come to expect." SSL Design PageTwo members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Government in China Sets 3 Levels of LED Subsidies
SSLDesign News Staff

February 16, 2012...The China government plans to set three levels of LED subsidies, according to a Digitimes article. The first subsidy is for the the central government to provide funding to LED firms to lower production costs. The second subsidy is for provinces and province-level municipalities will set up policies to subsidize customers. The third level of subsidies is for other regions to provide incentives according to local markets, according to the article.

The Digitimes article says that consumers have been reluctant to purchase LED lighting and firms have not been able to push down costs. Hence by having subsidies, the China government believes market mechanisms will be set and completed during the 12th Five-Year plan period.

The article also noted that China introduced policies to replace street lights with LED lamps in ten cities. The government is reportedly planning to add another ten cities in the second phase.

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Commentary & Perspectives...

LED Industry Buzzing at Strategies in Light
Tom Griffiths - Publisher

February 9, 2012...The leading annual US exhibition and conference for the broader LED industry supply chain, Strategies in Light, took place this week, and there is no doubt we're seeing a lively industry. Revenue growth at the packaged LED industry has been moderated a bit by the overall economic climate, but with most segments growing simply because LED-based solutions make sense, the overall picture is good and should continue that way. Here are some of the highlights that struck us, both in and around the event:

Is 2012 the year of the light engine?... A 'point of order' we're not shy about sharing is that lighting is already a fully-established industry, with fully-established channels, and upstart "chip-head" companies aren't necessarily going to be able to waltz right into the world of replacement lamps and luminaires without expecting more than a little market fight. Just a small step back from the luminaires are the different light-engine approaches, that provide a good opportunity for LED-based innovation, without the substantial channel challenges that arise at the level of full integration. We had the chance to hear from several companies that are making a good showing as "enablers" to the hundreds and hundreds of specialized luminaire manufacturers that may not have the resources to create an LED lighting design from scratch.

First up was Xicato, which has been making a name for itself with a color-consistency message that it has taken straight to the lighting decision makers, in hopes of setting a high-bar for any competitors to deal with. By combining a 'just barely' remote phosphor approach with thermal management that include cooling that phosphor plate, they are able to deliver modules that hit a 1.2 MacAdam ellipse target, and stay there for the life of the product. Not only does that suggest a luminaire incorporating that engine will be delivering essentially the same light 5+ years from now, but that subsequent versions spec'd at the same color temperature and CRI will match the originals despite their difference in ages.

While doing a good job of defining "color quality", they aren't going to be left alone in the space. Terralux is also after a piece of the market with its own innovations aimed at assuring an ultra-long lifetime. Their magic includes integrated thermal monitoring that compares the LED array operating parameters with the LM-80 data curves, so that operations are maintained within the "known" operating envelope at all times. Lumenetix, a name new to me, was also on hand showing its Araya family of dynamically-tuned white light engines. Able to vary their CCT from 2700K to 6000K, the design allows the users to tailor the light to suit the specific subject being lit, whether it's a painting or retail display, to achieve the desired effect. In a serious piece of fancy, they demonstrated a CCT copy-and-paste procedure that is a simple as aiming the remote control at one source (whatever it may be), capturing the observed CCT, and then "pasting" the same CCT to another luminaire. The luminaire has bi-directional communication with the remote in which the remote verifies the CCT by observation, rather than simply trusting that the luminaire hit the target. If it's not a perfect match, the remote provides the coordinate direction and magnitude "suggestions" for the luminaire to finish the tweaking process. Three very different, and productive approaches chasing what is currently a $1.9B module market opportunity, and which is projected to approach $6B towards the end of the decade.

Planar and power... In a sideline visit, we spent a few minutes with Eran Fine, CEO of Israel-based Oree, for an update on their planar LED technology. For those not familiar with Oree's approach, imagine something about the size and thickness of a playing card, that glows with a bright, uniform white light from one side. Personally, I've called it the "white OLED killer" as it provides a simple answer to the standard 'point source' LED challenge, and delivers the ultra-thin form factor with 85 lm/watt efficiency, all at 1/15th the price of an OLED solution. Color tunability is also part of the demonstrated capabilities, and overall, it's out of the box thinking, and well-supported by strategic industry investor-partners. It looks like what many of us imagined early-on as one "futuristic" approach to lighting that LEDs enable.

At the other end of the technology spectrum, Soraa shared some additional detail on its technology launch into the replacement lamp space. CEO Eric Kim outlined the gist of their innovation, which is simply making use of correctly polarized pure GaN substrates, allowing them to operate with incredible power densities within the LED structure. Not to get too techie, but while "normal" LEDs get brighter as you drive more current through them, they also lose efficiency. We call it "the droop problem", and if it went away, we could get a lot more lumens out of much smaller LEDs. The Soraa design, arrived at in no small part through a few decades of Shuji Nakamura's and Steve Denbaar's research, pushes 250 amps per square centimeter through it while still maintaining 90% of the starting efficiency. Now to get a little too techie, think about that for a second... if we assume 10 watts are doing the job of making the equivalent light of a 50W halogen, we're probably dealing with 3.3A at an LED-standard 3V. 3.3 into 250 is .013, which suggests the LED itself may only be 1/100th of a square centimeter. Even if some of my speculations are off by a factor of 2, 1/50th of a square centimeter is still reallly-really small. Talk about a point source! If the chunk of GaN you use to make the LED is small enough, you can get a bunch more of them from one expensive wafer, which makes each one relatively cheap. It's also a dream come true for the optics designer, since a smaller source suggests you can use a smaller optic to get a desired beam pattern. Soraa tells me that they're a few thousand hours into testing, with good results that are backing up their lifetime predictions. More data is needed to know that they've got the full package here, but things look good for this to be one of those noticeable breakthroughs that make the science of semiconductors interesting.

A vision for the future... Awareness seems to be building that now that LEDs are able to begin economically serving a number of areas in lighting, we can afford to expand our vision beyond just replacing the current lighting out there, to instead beginning to see where this could all go. Much as optical communications gave life to a whole new, and really-really big thing called "e-commerce", the fundamental technology of solid state light opens the door to "apps" none of us had previously imagined. For lack of a better term, lets call it "adaptive, responsive, interactive lighting". In a reception hosted by Light Based Technologies, the execs there did a good job of summarizing a concept of "personalizing" light by accepting inputs at a level of granularity relevant to an individual "user" and then responding at that same user level. Communicating information back up the hierarchy, for instance to that section, of that floor, of that building, on that grid, can allow those progressively larger functional blocks to take those conditions at the user level into account in "the big picture" of energy and environmental management. It can start to get very abstract, very quickly, but if we acknowledge that our health, happiness and productivity can all be influenced by light, and that now we finally have the technology that enables us to control it with unprecedented precision, we're off on a hunt to truly understand it. The discussion has just begun, and I, for one, look forward to "the more" that we'll uncover in the process.

The SSL Summit, April 3-4 in Long Beach California, is all about the future of better, smarter lighting. Make your plans now to join key visionaries who will engage, and help shape, the future of lighting. Visit www.SSLsummit.com for more information.

 

 

 

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