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Commentary: The Significance of the LED Lighting Industry
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Azerbaijan to Mass Produce LEDs with Help of LG
LIGHTimes News Staff

January 22, 2015...The country of Azerbaijan plans to develop LED chip production domestically with the help of LG, according to an article in Azernews. Azerbaijan’s State Fund for Development of Information Technologies reported that it plans to finance the development of LED production in 2015. Over $7 million will go towards working on the technology of developing LED chips based on thin layers.

The LED technologies are expected to be used for street lighting in the capital, as well as other street, decorative, general, and architectural lighting applications. The Azerbaijani Research Center for High Technologies will collaborate South Korea’s LG Company on the commercial venture. After meeting the country’s LED lighting needs, the technologies will be exported internationally. The HiTech Park is to be the location of LED chip mass production.

Cree Debuts XLamp MH Family of Ceramic COB LEDs
LIGHTimes News Staff

January 22, 2015...Cree has introduced the new XLamp mid-power high lumen density (MH) family of chip-on-board (COB) LEDs. The Durham, North Carolina company announced the first members of the family, the MHD-E and MHD-G. Both offer high lumen density and the reliability of a ceramic chip-on-board LED and a surface-mount package. The LEDs employ elements of the Cree SC5 Technology™ Platform. Cree says that the MH family enables superior performance with new designs and significantly lower system costs.

“The high lumen output and high reliability of Cree’s new MHD-G LED allows us to develop a new downlight that outperforms other downlights in the market,” said Baly Luo, general manager, Aeon Lighting Technology. “ALT’s compact-size, 4-inch downlight that is built with the MHD-G LED generates over 1,800 lumens at 3000 K while other downlights can only produce 800 to 1000 lumens.”

The LEDs offer the Cree EasyWhite® technology in a 7-mm x 7-mm package, XLamp MH LEDs allow a smaller board size, tighter beam angle and a more traditional appearance than conventional mid-power LEDs. Delivering more than 1800 lumens at 14 W and 2500 lumens at 19 W respectively, the XLamp MHD-E and MHD-G LEDs are perfect for high-lumen, semi-directional applications such as high-bays, downlights, and outdoor area applications.

“At Cree, we continue to deliver innovative products that give our customers a competitive edge in the marketplace,” said Paul Thieken, Cree director of marketing, LED Components. “With the MHD LEDs, we’re offering chip-on-board performance to lighting manufacturers that prefer surface-mount technology, making it easier for them to achieve lower system cost than with the same commoditized mid-power LEDs that everyone is using.”

Cree XLamp MHD-E and MHD-G LEDs come in 2700 K – 6500 K correlated color temperatures with high-CRI and multiple voltage options. Samples are available, and production quantities are available with standard lead times.

Cree Makes Extreme High Power XHP LEDs Commercially Available
LIGHTimes News Staff

December 19, 2014...Durham, North Carolina-based Cree, Inc. announced the commercial availability of XLamp® Extreme High Power (XHP) LEDs. The company introduced the XHP LEDs in October. The company claims that the XHP LEDs are a new class of LEDs that enable a system cost reduction of up to 40 percent for lighting applications. The XLamp XHP50 and XHP70 LEDs, which are powered by Cree’s SC5 Technology™ Platform, boast twice the lumen output and improved reliability compared to previous LEDs of the same size.

The XLamp XHP50 and XHP70 LEDs deliver up to 2546 lumens at 19 watts from a 5.0 x 5.0 mm package and up to 4022 lumens at 32 watts from a 7.0 x 7.0 mm package, respectively. Improvements in the light conversion process has reportedly helped Cree reduce LED-to-LED color variations. XHP LEDs come in 2-step and 3-step EasyWhite® bins for 3500K through 2700K in 80 and 90 CRI. The XHP LEDs allow manufacturers to choose either 6 V or 12 V configurations from the same LED through the solder pad design on the circuit board.

“Cree’s new technology is game-changing compared to the incremental advances of other LED suppliers. The breakthrough performance of XHP LEDs enables both new design possibilities and dramatically lower system costs for LED lighting,” said Nate Heiking, Advanced Lighting product manager, Kenall Lighting. “We’re excited that Cree’s new class of Extreme High Power LEDs will accelerate customer adoption of LED lighting.”

Cree contends that its XHP LEDs allow lighting manufacturers to dramatically reduce the size and cost of their lighting systems using fewer, more reliable LEDs to achieve the same brightness. According to Cree, designs with XHP LEDs enable new lighting designs that require smaller housing, a smaller printed circuit board, and fewer optics. Cree asserts that XHP LEDs also achieve longer lifetimes even at higher operating temperatures and currents than previous LED technology, allowing a smaller sink and reducing cost without impacting the rated lifetime.

Cree says other cost reductions on a system level are possible with its XHP LEDs. In roadway and outdoor area lighting, XHP LEDs enable a radically smaller and lighter luminaire that requires a less expensive pole. According to Cree, similar dramatic cost savings compared to existing solutions are possible in a wide range of lighting applications, including stadium, track, and high bay.

“Cree’s new Extreme High Power LEDs demonstrate our belief that high-power LEDs are what will drive the industry towards the next generation of lighting system designs,” said Dave Emerson, vice president and general manager for Cree LEDs. “Leveraging our groundbreaking SC5 Technology™ Platform, Cree’s new XHP LEDs deliver not only exceptional performance, but also enable up to 40 percent system level cost reductions.”

Samples of both XLamp XHP50 and XHP70 are available now, and production quantities are available with standard lead times.

Plessey Achieves 120 lm/W with GaN-on-Si LEDs in Lab and its GaN-on-Si LEDs to Power 8point3's Linear Lighting Products
LIGHTimes News Staff

November 20, 2014...Plessey Semiconductor of Plymouth, UK reports that the company has agreed to supply its gallium nitride on silicon MaGIC (Manufactured on GaN-on-Si I/C) high-brightness LEDs to UK-based LED luminaire producer 8point3 Ltd. 8point3 plans to use the Plessey LEDs in its new Sabre Architectural range of LED linear lighting products, which will be officially labeled ‘Made in Britain'. Plessey asserts that that recent performance improvements in its MaGIC LEDs have made them competitive with any LED technology.

In related news, Plessey announced that its GaN-on-Si MaGIC high-brightness LED technology has achieved light output of 120 lumens per watt with over 50% light output efficiency.

8point3's Sabre Architectural luminaires employ remote phosphor with a unique light emission design that provides what the company claims to be high system efficiencies and economic life. The Sabre Architectural luminaires come in a wide range of color temperatures, and are said to deliver a uniform and diffuse luminance and appearance without reflections or pixilation. The Sabre Architectural luminaires offer lighting for high lumen areas.

“A technology agreement has also been reached, whereby Plessey will design bespoke LED solutions in the UK to complement 8point3’s ongoing lighting projects,” said Mark Pinnock, Plessey’s regional sales manager for Northern Europe and account manager for 8point3.

Plessey’s range of products for lighting applications is being showcased at LuxLive (the UK’s biggest lighting show) at ExCel London (19-20 November).

Plessey hopes to achieve even greater lm/Watt efficiency soon. Plessey chief technology officer Keith Strickland commented, “Whilst 120 lumens per watt for an LED may be considered ‘acceptable’ to industry, we must remember that we have doubled our LED light output in the past six months.”

“I see no reason why we cannot reach state-of-the-art in LED die output performance within the next six months. This current process technology will become the base for our Application Specific LEDs, the ASLED that bridges the gap between the LED component suppliers and the solid-state lighting fixture designers and OEMs,” Strickland continued.

“The combination of expertise and a sustained period of light output performance improvement in the core LED material is due to our holistic approach to LED development - our in-house experts in epitaxy growth, process development and die design all working together,” said operations director Mike Snaith. “This way of working will continue and strengthen as we drive towards the next generation of higher-efficiency, silicon-based integrated LED solutions and away from discrete, plastic-packaged LED components.”

Osram Opto Semiconductors Adds P 13 to its Soleriq P Series
LIGHTimes News Staff

November 11, 2014...The new Osram Soleriq P 13, a small LED with a high output and the most powerful in its series, achieves a brightness level of up to 6800 lumens (lm). The compact P 13 has a small light-emitting surface measuring just 13.5 mm in diameter. The LED is reportedly ideal for high-powered spotlights in museums and shops as well as for high bay lighting. The new Soleriq P 13 LEDs will be unveiled at the “electronica” trade show in Munich from November 11 to 14 (Hall A3, Booth 107).

The P 13 is available in two versions with different color rendering indexes (CRI). The CRI 80 LED has a brightness of 4000 lm even at high temperatures (85° C, 1050 mA) and can be overdriven to provide up to 6800 lm. The entire package measures just 18 mm x 18 mm x 1.5 mm. The small sized package facilitates compact and bright lighting solutions for indoor spotlights and high bay lighting. For spotlight applications demanding high lumen output, small beam angles, as well as high color quality, the CRI 90 version provides 3300 lm as standard and up to 5600 lm when overdriven.

“Customers could compare the P 13 with the formerly launched Soleriq S 19 due to its similar light output of 4000 to 5000 lm. In fact, the new Soleriq P 13 has smaller dimensions and is therefore the right choice for more compact lighting solutions," explained Lim Kok Peng, product manager in marketing for general lighting at Osram Opto Semiconductors.

With the P13, customers need fewer LEDs to achieve the same light output compared to other products in the Soleriq P series including the P 9 or the P 6. This saves costs. The company says that the small LES allows a simpler lens design which costs less and enables more compact lighting solutions. Binning of the LEDs takes place at 85° C (“hot binning”). The85° C temperature very closely matches normal operating conditions and enables the brightness and color values of the LEDs to be precisely determined in line with their subsequent use.

The LED in the Soleriq family are all based on Chip-on-Board technology for a uniform color and light appearance. The Soleriq family's LES is compatible with the international Zhaga standard. Furthermore, the accessories tailored to the Soleriq family such as connectors, optics and drivers are all available on the market and can be obtained for example via the Osram partner network, LED Light for you (LLFY).

Bridgelux Launches New Chip-on-Board LED Arrays with "Human Centric" Design Approach
LIGHTimes News Staff

October 28, 2014...Bridgelux of Livermore, California USA, will debut its new Vero® Decor Series™ Class A Chip-on-Board (CoB) LED array products at the Hong Kong International Lighting Fair 2014. The launch of the Decor Series Class A arrays marks Bridgelux's new "human-centric" approach to product development and color targeting. The company has started looking at a relatively new metric called the Gamut Area Index along with the Color Rendering Index.

The Gamut Area Index (GAI) in short measures how light and color appeal to and are perceived by the human brain. GAI (Gamut Area Index). The gamut area of a light source is that area enclosed by a polygon within a chromaticity diagram. The greater the separation among the selected points, the greater the gamut area. The Gamut Area Index is the difference between the Gamut Area of a specific light source and a reference light source.

The company contends that while CRI only measures color distortion, the Gamut Area Index (GAI) measures color saturation and strength to more accurately reflect the holistic effect of light and how a person will perceive color. Bridgelux says its Decor Series Class A arrays are engineered at the optimal GAI and CRI combination based on human perception of light.

The company says it will make the arrays available through global channels in mid-November.

Bridgelux says that the new Decor Series Class A arrays are the first products to use the full Class A Color specification from the Lighting Research Center (LRC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the Alliance for Solid-State Illumination Systems and Technologies (ASSIST).

In a long term study with funding from ASSIST, researchers at the LRC developed what they call, Class A Color. The study examined preferences in color rendering and how people perceive white light sources along with the white hue or tint of the light source. Bridgelux reportedly developed prototype lamps based on the Class A Color spectral requirements for the LRC to use in field evaluations.

"Class A Color has been broadly tested and 'tuned' to ensure the most pleasing blend of naturalness and vividness based on subjective human perceptions," said Jean Paul Freyssinier, senior research scientist at the Lighting Research Center. "A majority (75 percent) of those tested from around the world agree that Class A Color light sources provide the best color rendering and optimum saturation levels. It's consistent lighting that won't disappoint."

Bridgelux insists that Class A colors are inherently more vivid and whites are their whitest due to a broader spectrum of colors and saturation.

According to Bridgelux, the Decor Series of Class A LED Arrays achieve a balance of color properties that match how people perceive color to provide superior color quality. Bridgelux further asserts that the arrays provide a better return on investment when compared to traditional halogen and ceramic metal halide bulbs.

Decor Series Class A LEDs boast 30 percent less energy consumption, 70 percent less heat generated, and have a projected lifetime of about 20 times longer than halogen or metal halide light sources.

In retail settings, Decor Series Class A LED arrays appeal to people's natural perception of light, helping to drive improved aesthetics, increased visits, customer purchases, and revenue per square foot.

"The launch of our Decor Series Class A LED arrays is a game changer for Bridgelux, our customers and the industry," said Brad Bullington, CEO of Bridgelux. "Light has the power to influence how people behave, what they purchase, their productivity and their mood. Our new human-centric approach harnesses that potential to help our customers create custom light experiences that deliver great aesthetics and a tangible financial impact."

Bridgelux Vero Decor Series Class A arrays will be available in 4000 K and 3000 K CCT. They are designed for applications including high-end retail, hospitality, museums and commercial spaces.

Luminus launches 1W SMD LED with 170° Emission Angle
LIGHTimes News Staff

October 28, 2014...Luminus Devices Inc based in Billerica, Massachusetts, USA, has launched the XNOVA Cube, a 1 watt SMD LED with a 170° viewing angle. Luminus contends that the XNOVA Cube improves system efficacy, reduces cost, and simplifies omni-directional products.

Unlike traditional mid-power LEDs, which Luminus says were originally designed for LCD backlighting, Luminus designed the XNOVA Cube specifically for illumination applications requiring high quality of light. The small 1.9mm by 1.9mm package has a 170 degree viewing angle, which the company claims is the widest in the industry. Luminus claims that the XNOVA cube emits more light than any mid-power LED.

“The XNOVA Cube has opened-up new design options for our customers in the highly competitive panel lighting, linear and omni-directional lamp markets,” said Jim Miller, executive VP of sales & marketing. “They are able to reduce LED count by as much as 30% and at the same time cut power consumption by 10%, which enables further cost reductions in drivers, thermal systems, and optical components.”

Luminus Devices is exhibiting its XNOVA illumination product line at the Hong Kong International Lighting Fair (27-30 October).

Cree Lowers System Costs with New SC5 Platform and XBH50 LED
LIGHTimes News Staff

October 23, 2014...Cree, Inc. has introduced an LED with the company's SC5 Technology™ Platform. The new platform powers the company's Extreme High Power (XHP) LEDs. As with their previous LED developments, Cree has begun approaching LEDs not as the biggest contributor to the cost of a lighting system, but as one of several contributors including the heatsink and the optics. This approach has lead Cree to create smaller and brighter LEDs that operate at higher temperatures. The approach has further lead Cree to develop its XHB50, which the company says doubles light output and greatly lowers system cost. Cree claims its new class of LEDs can reduce system costs by up to 40 percent in most lighting applications.

The SC5 platform and the new class of LEDs use the company's silicon carbide technology. Silicon carbide allows the LEDs to operate at higher temperature (up to 105 degrees C). At the same time, the new LED has double the light output of previous iterations with the same efficiency, but in the same footprint. The LED on silicon carbide that can run at higher temperatures does not need as large of a heatsink. This translates to lower cost for the heatsink. Furthermore, the higher output and higher lumen density means that fewer LEDs are needed for each application, and these take up less PCB space and have a lower PCB mounting cost (because there are fewer). In turn, this translates to smaller and less expensive optics.

Cree says its advancements in epitaxial structure and chip architecture go into the SC5 platform. The XHP50 runs on either 6- or 12-Volts, and has a new solder pad layout that allows either 6- or 12-volt operation without additional circuitry.

The first of the new class of LEDs is the XBH50. The XBH50 has an L90 of 50,000 hours. According to Cree, the longer projected lifetime comes from the LED's ability to operate at up to 105 degrees C. The XHP50 LED delivers up to 2250 lumens at 19 watts from a 5.0x5.0 mm package. Cree contends that at its maximum current, the XHP50 provides twice the light output of the industry’s brightest single-die LED, the XLamp XM-L2 LED, at a similar lumens per watt and without increasing the package footprint.

Chuck Swoboda, Cree chairman and CEO said, “The SC5 Technology™ Platform redefines what is possible in high-power LEDs by doubling the lumens out of a single LED, giving lighting manufacturers the flexibility to innovate significantly lower cost systems. This new platform establishes a new benchmark for LED lumens per wafer, which we believe will define the long-term success of our industry. This also validates our belief that high-power LED technology enables the best lighting system designs and a better lighting experience for end customers.”

“LEDs are no longer the most expensive portion of an LED lighting system, but they fundamentally determine the overall system performance and cost,” said Dave Emerson, vice president and general manager for Cree LEDs. “While other LED manufacturers only promise incrementally lower LED cost, our new Extreme High Power (XHP) LEDs leveraging the SC5 Technology™ Platform directly address the increased burden that thermal, mechanical and optical elements now place on total system cost.”

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