Posts

What Do You Think About the New “Lighting Facts” Labels?

So, the Federal Trade Commission (or the FTC, as we refer to it – or as Eminem says, “the FTC won’t let me be, let me be me, so let me see…”) has decided to add some “Lighting Facts” labels to lamps now.  Check these babies out – hopefully you say “hey, those are lighting nutrition labels!”

So obviously there are two labels here – one for lamps containing mercury, and one for lamps that do not contain mercury.

What do you think of these labels?  Quite frankly, I think there is some information missing, and I’m probably being overly anal about this – but it’s my blog, and I think it needs more stuff!  First, what happened to the colored “Light Appearance” graph?  Like this:

CRI, CCT, efficacy, maybe even the equation for people to figure out how to determine their own yearly energy usage cost per lamp based on their OWN kilowatt-hour price and usage hours per day.  Now these are things that I think would be important, no?  Granted I am a lighting nerd, but I really think that dumbing something like this down just drives down the intelligence level of our society.  What’s wrong with providing more information?  I mean, how many people actually give a damn about how much Selenium their McNuggets have?

My point exactly.  But we get to know about minute differences like that with food.  Why can’t we know about more detailed aspects of our illumination?  Don’t get me wrong – I’m glad that we have this now, being implemented in mid-2011, because it’s better than nothing.  From the FTC website on the matter:

Under direction from Congress to re-examine the current labels, the FTC is announcing a final rule that will require the new labels on light bulb packages. For the first time, the label on the front of the package will emphasize the bulbs’ brightness as measured in lumens, rather than a measurement of watts. The new front-of-package labels also will include the estimated yearly energy cost for the particular type of bulb.

Yeah.  It is definitely better measured in lumens, don’tcha think?  That’s my two cents.

Thanks to the Lighting Facts website and the FTC’s post on the subject.

Panasonic Says 19 Years on Their EverLED Lamp

everled4

Stories of Panasonic’s new EverLED lamp are making their way around the intarwebs in the last week – in October (the 21st to be specific), Japan will see the release of Panasonic’s new line of household LED incandescent replacement lamps.  Panasonic is selling this new LED source as one that will last 19 years if used an average of about five and a half hours a day.  One one hand, awesome!  On the other, will there be a department to substantiate fraud claims if this doesn’t work?  And how on earth have they tested this claim?  I’m no rocket surgeon, but is this all based on mathematical estimate?

First, what does an average of five hours a day equal?  It means about 40,000 lamp hours.  Take that how you will.  40,000 hours is 40,000 hours no matter how you spin it.  But – when you claim 19 years on an average of five and a half hours a day, what happens when you run the lamp constantly for 500 hour stints at a time – or even 72 hour runs on average?

Don’t worry, I’m not poo-pooing Panasonic’s EverLED lamp.  I’m actually excited to see it in action.  We’re testing one of EternaLEDs’ HydraLux-4s in our apartment for testing, and it’s doing great, and provides a good light.  I’m a lighting designer – I am critical AND loving!

The Panasonic EverLED has some interesting efficacy numbers – keep in mind that these numbers are without a luminaire – just the lamp on its own:

  • The LDa7D-A1 model, equal in output to a 40W incandescent, has an efficacy of 82.6 lm/W
  • The LDA4D-A1 model, equal in output to a 30W incandescent, has an efficacy of 85 lm/W

These numbers are very good – they basically make the EverLED models about 40 times more efficient than an incandescent lamp (a rough number is about 12 lm/W for a 40W incandescent).  But what do you think the number one issue keeping consumers away from LED lamps is currently?

If you guessed price, you’re right on the money.  The EverLED is going to cost about $40 bucks (or 4,000 yen), and at this time is only available in Japan.  Similar LED lamps are upwards of the same price range.  When you can buy a pack of incandescent lamps for under two dollars, what’s giving the low-income families incentive to buy something that costs the same as a tank of gas?

Check out some images, and the press release from CompoundSemi:

everled5

everled3

everled2

From CompoundSemi:

September 10, 2009… Osaka, Japan–Panasonic Corporation, a leader in electronics technology and innovation, today unveiled bulb-shaped LED (light-emitting diode) lamps, the latest addition to its EVERLEDS LED lighting products. The new line-up consisting of eight types of bulbs offers the industry’s most energy-efficient(1), lightest(2) and smallest LED bulbs(3). They also include the industry’s first compact type LED bulbs(4) and dimmable lamps. By offering a variety of energy-saving, long-lasting, environmentally-friendly LED lamps, Panasonic encourages consumers to replace traditional incandescent lamps to address climate-change issues.

The new line-up includes 4.0 W (LDA4L-A1 and LDA4D-A1), 6.9 W (LDA7L-A1 and LDA7D-A1) and 7.6 W (LDA8L-A1/D and LDA8D-A1/D) standard type (E26 base) LED bulbs and 5.5 W (LDA6L-E17-A1/D and LDA6D-E17-A1/D) compact type (E17 base) LED bulbs. Available in “Daylight” and warm “Lamp” colors, they will go on sale in Japan on October 21.

The new products use Panasonic’s own heat dissipation technology to increase the bulb’s energy-efficiency. Generally speaking, LED’s luminous efficiency increases as temperature decreases. So it is important to lower and optimize the temperature of an LED package to achieve higher luminous efficiency. By applying alumite treatment to the surface, Panasonic successfully increased heat dissipation to lower the temperate of the LED package.

Combining this technology with the design which tightly joins the LED package and the casing, the company has achieved the industry’s highest energy efficiency in LED bulbs(1).

Also, when used as a downlight, the 6.9 W standard type LED bulbs deliver the brightness equivalent to 60 W incandescent bulbs5). That means it can save up to 2,000 yen per year on energy bills. The 4.0 W standard and 5.5 W compact LED bulbs produce the output comparable to 40 W incandescents and the 7.6 W standard LED bulbs have the brightness of 60 W incandescents when used as a downlight(6).

Panasonic also made the new LED bulbs the lightest2) in the industry by making the casing thinner and reducing the amount of aluminum used in the product. The standard size E26 base bulb weighs only 100 g and the compact size E17 base bulb weighs 50 g.

Further, Panasonic employed its own thermal analysis technology to optimize the heat dissipating configuration (heat sink) to create the most compact E26 base LED bulbs in terms of length and outer diameter. The new LED lamps, including the industry’s first E17 base LED bulbs, will easily fit into existing fixtures with which other replacement bulbs did not physically match.

The E26 base LED bulbs have a long lifespan of up to 40,000 hours. That means they last for about 19 years when used for 5.5 hours a day. The E17 base LED bulbs have about 20,000 hour life span. The new LED bulbs also feature a durable glass globe using glass manufacturing technology Panasonic accumulated over the years. They emit virtually no UV or IR radiation. The 7.6 W standard type and the 5.5 W compact type LED bulbs are dimmable from 10 percent to 100 percent.

Notes:

(1) The standard type LDA7D-A1 LED bulb, which produces the brightness equivalent to a 40 W incandescent lamp when used without fixtures, has luminous efficiency of 82.6 lm/W and standard type LDA4D-A1 LED bulb, which produces the brightness equivalent to a 30 W incandescent lamp when used without fixtures, has luminous efficiency of 85.0 lm/w, as of September 10, 2009.

(2) As a standard type LED bulb, as of September 10, 2009.
(3) In terms of length and outer diameter.
(4) As a compact type LED bulb (E17 base) which produces the brightness equivalent to a 25 W mini-krypton when used without fixtures.
(5) Direct lighting when used with the LB72630Z fixture by Panasonic Electric Works (PEW).
(6) Direct lighting when used with PEW’s LB72106 (4.0 W LED bulb), LB72630Z (7.6 W LED bulb) and LB74059 (5.5 W LED bulb) fixtures.

Thanks to CNet, Inhabitat, and CompoundSemi!

That’s Right, I Said Water-Cooled LEDs for the Home

hydralux-4hydralux

A company called EternaLEDs is selling a product called the HydraLux-4 lamp – it’s an LED source for the home and office, fully dimmable, and equivalent to about 25W (the lamp itself consumes 4W).  The biggest difference?  The HydraLux-4 is water cooled.  That was water cooled, in case the first time I typed it wasn’t clear.

It’s no secret that LEDs generate heat.  Heat shortens their lifespan, leads to crappy lumen depreciation, and generally wears and tears at the components of the source.  EternaLEDs’ HydraLux-4 apparently defeats this problem with the water cooling, and claims a 360° light output, unlike a lot of other LED sources on the market.  The HydraLux-4 comes in “warm white” and “daylight white,” with a two-year warranty and 30-day guarantee.

A bit of info from the EternaLED site, comparing the HyrdaLux-4 to other sources:

  • Saves money. At 8 hours a day, the HydraLux-4 only costs $1.75 per year* to run, saving an average of $157.00 over the lifetime of the bulb in electricity and bulb replacement costs.
  • Long Lasting. The HydraLux-4 is rated at 35,000 hours. At 8 hours usage per day, it will last 12 years.
  • Non-Hazardous. These bulbs contain no mercury, unlike CFLs so they don’t require special disposal or clean up. Likewise, the liquid inside is equivalent in composition to baby oil so it’s completely non-toxic and UL compliant.
  • Fully-dimmable. Many LED and CFL bulbs are not capable of being dimmed. The HydraLux-4 is fully dimmable, allowing consumers to create the ambiance they desire by using existing dimmer switches.
  • Outdoor-approved. Many LED bulbs have their components exposed to open air so are can’t be used outdoors. The HydraLux-4 is one of the few LED bulbs approved for both indoor and outdoor use.
  • Cool to the touch. The HydraLux-4 runs cool, cutting down on cooling costs as well as being safe in household applications.
  • Eternaleds plans to announce 8W, 12W and 16W versions of the HydraLux by the end of 2009.
  • The Eternaleds HydraLux-4 comes in two colors, Warm White and Daylight White, and can be ordered directly from Eternaleds.com at a list price of $34.99. Every purchase comes with a two-year warranty and 30-day money-back guarantee.

The HyrdaLux-4 is available on the EternaLEDs website for $34.99.  They’re also saying 2-3 weeks for shipping due to popularity.  It’s a relatively hefty pricetag, but for 35,000 hours it’s not a bad deal.

aqualux-dining-room

aqualux-desklamp

aqualux-bedlight

Check out this video:

Sharp Says “Here World, Have Nine Models of LED A-Lamps”

Electronics manufacturer Sharp has released a series of nine LED A-type lamps for the world to chew on – color temperatures from warm white to daylight (so that’s eight of the models) and a revolutionary color-changing remote controlled lamp that is controllable from warm white to daylight.

That’s pretty cool – my first question is obviously output, and Sharp has the daylight white model at around 560 lumens.  If you compare that to a 60w incandescent at 850 lumens it’s 35% less output, but it’s also got a lifetime of 40,000 hours (about 40 times the lifespan of an incandescent) and uses a minute fraction of the power.

Cost is obviously a factor, right?  The fixed color temperature sources are retailing around the $40 dollar mark ($42-$44) and the color changing model runs around $82 bucks.  Now theoretically if you were to use this six hours a day each day of the week, every week for a year, you’d use 2016 hours of the lamp’s life.  If you divide that into 40,000 hours of lamplife, this lamp will last you about 20 years.  If you compare power consumption costs with a 60w incandescent, there’s a clear winner, the LED source at 112 lumens per watt compared to the incandescent efficacy of around 14 lumens per watt.

Well, we will see, won’t we?  I do love these innovations!

About the adjustable color temperature and intensity source – from the press release from Sharp:

The model DL-L60AV LED Lamp features an Adjustable Color Function that enables users to change the color of the white light emitted from the lamp using an accessory remote control, an industry first for an LED lamp*1. Users can select from seven different shades of white ranging from a pleasing warm white to a cooler daylight white to match the weather, the season, time of day, purpose, or other preferences. This model also features a built-in Dimmer Function to adjust brightness. Together, these features allow users to select the illumination they like best to complement a diverse range of interior settings by using a single remote control to change the color and brightness of the light.

In addition, the model DL-L601N LED Lamp delivers a brightness of 560 lumens, among the highest in the industry for LED lamps*1 having nearly the same size and shape as ordinary incandescent lamps.

Check out some images:

sharp led

sharp led a lamp

led-lightbulb-tunable-color-japan03

Thanks Treehugger and DVICE!