Month: September 2009

July 2009 Construction Holds Steady at $958 Billion Annual Rate

Construction spending during July 2009 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $958 billion, 0.2% below the revised June estimate of $959.5 billion and 10.5% below the July…

Construction spending during July 2009 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $958 billion, 0.2% below the revised June estimate of $959.5 billion and 10.5% below the July 2009 estimate of $1,070.2 billion. During the first seven months of 2009, construction spending reached $543.8 billion, 11.4% below the $613.5 billion for the same period in 2008.

Residential spending held steady in June versus May. Residential construction increased slightly from $252.1 billion in May to $253.8 billion in June. It had been falling fairly steadily since January, and remains 29.3% off June 2008.

Nonresidential construction declined in July. Private nonresidential construction declined from about $389.5 billion in June to about $384.9 billion in July. This represents an 8.3% decrease from July 2008. Public nonresidential construction also declined from about $321.6 billion in June to about $319 in July. This market is 5.4% over July 2008, however.

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Renaissance Lighting LED Downlights Win ENERGY STAR Certification

The Department of Energy has awarded the ENERGY STAR qualification to Renaissance Lighting Inc. on 11 of its newest all-white solid-state LED downlight fixtures. The ENERGY STAR qualification helps consumers…

The Department of Energy has awarded the ENERGY STAR qualification to Renaissance Lighting Inc. on 11 of its newest all-white solid-state LED downlight fixtures. The ENERGY STAR qualification helps consumers identify the most energy efficient products on the market. ENERGY STAR qualification currently requires an LED recessed downlight fixture to deliver an efficacy of at least 35 lumens/W.

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2010 Lightfair Trade Show Floor Nearly Sold Out

Lightfair has announced that trade show floorspace is more than 92% sold for the 2010 show in Las Vegas. Net year, the show floor will be supported by four pavilions—two…

Lightfair has announced that trade show floorspace is more than 92% sold for the 2010 show in Las Vegas.

Net year, the show floor will be supported by four pavilions—two of which will be familiar to Lightfair attendees, and two that will debut: the Building Integration Pavilion and the Global Light + Design Pavilion—known since its 2008 introduction as the European Light + Design Pavilion. The pavilions will open on May 12, 2010, the opening day of Lightfair.

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Electroindustry Business Confidence Index Signals Improvement in August

NEMA’s Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American conditions jumped nearly 12 points to 53.3 in August, an indication that the business environment facing electrical equipment manufacturers improved…

NEMA’s Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American conditions jumped nearly 12 points to 53.3 in August, an indication that the business environment facing electrical equipment manufacturers improved during the month. This is the highest rating for the EBCI since April 2007.

Meanwhile, the North American future conditions EBCI also climbed in August, rising 1.7 points to 68.3. This marked the highest reading for the future conditions index since August 2005 and implies that a significant proportion of industry executives expect at least some degree of improvement in the business situation within the next six months.

The Electroindustry Business Confidence Index gauges the business confidence of the electroindustry in Asia, Europe, North America, and Latin America, and is based on the results of a monthly survey of senior managers at NEMA member companies. Those companies represent more than 80% of the electroindustry.

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Architecture Billings Index Points to Continued Struggles for Construction Industry

Another stall in the recovery for the construction industry as the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) dropped to its lowest level since June. As a leading economic indicator of construction activity,…

Another stall in the recovery for the construction industry as the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) dropped to its lowest level since June. As a leading economic indicator of construction activity, the ABI reflects the approximate nine- to 12-month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the August ABI rating was 41.7, down slightly from 43.1 in July. This score indicates a decline in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry score was 55.2.

“While there have been occasional signs of optimism over the last few months, the overwhelming majority of architects are reporting that banks are extremely reluctant to provide financing for projects, and that new equity requirements and conservative appraisals are making it even more difficult for developers to get loans,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. “Until the anxiety within the financial community eases, these conditions are likely to continue.”

Key August ABI highlights:

* Regional averages: Northeast (45.2), South (44.1), Midwest (43.0), West (34.5),
* Sector index breakdown: commercial / industrial (45.6), multi-family residential (43.4), mixed practice (41.4), institutional (37.5)
* Project inquiries index: 55.2

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Court Awards iLight Technologies $5 Million in Patent Lawsuit

LED company iLight Technologies, Inc. has announced that Federal Court rulings confirmed its victory in a patent infringement litigation case against sign company Fallon Luminous Products Corporation. The Court awarded…

LED company iLight Technologies, Inc. has announced that Federal Court rulings confirmed its victory in a patent infringement litigation case against sign company Fallon Luminous Products Corporation. The Court awarded to iLight $5 million in damages plus attorney fees, according to iLight.

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ASHRAE/USGBC/IES Standard 189.1P Public Review Draft Available for Public Comment Through November 2, 2009

BSR/ASHRAE/USGBC/IES Standard 189.1P, Standard for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings is now in its fourth review draft and available for public review. This standard provides…

BSR/ASHRAE/USGBC/IES Standard 189.1P, Standard for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings is now in its fourth review draft and available for public review.

This standard provides minimum criteria that apply to new buildings and major renovation projects (new portions of buildings and their systems) and cover sustainable sites, water use efficiency, energy efficiency, the building’s impact on the atmosphere, materials and resources, and indoor environmental quality.

Download it here from the ASHRAE website. The current public review period expires November 2, 2009.

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History in The Making? The Race Is On: Philips Enters First Contestant for L Prize

The Department of Energy’s Bright Tomorrow Lighting Prize (L Prize) competition has received its first entrant: a product from Philips Electronics. Philips has developed, manufactured and will bring to market…

The Department of Energy’s Bright Tomorrow Lighting Prize (L Prize) competition has received its first entrant: a product from Philips Electronics.

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Philips has developed, manufactured and will bring to market an LED replacement for the common 60W incandescent light bulb. Philips developed this product in response to DOE’s industry-wide challenge, and was today recognized by DOE as the first company to submit an entry.

Established through the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, the L Prize offers substantial rewards for the first manufacturer to meet its very demanding requirements—ensuring that performance, quality, lifetime, cost and availability meet expectations for widespread adoption and mass manufacturing. Required metrics for the 60W incandescent LED replacement, as laid out by DOE, include:

* Efficacy of more than 90 lumens/W, which exceeds the efficiency of all incandescent and most compact fluorescent sources today, which range from 10 to 60 lumens/W
* Energy consumption of less than 10 watts as compared to a 60 Watt incandescent.
* Output of more than 900 lumens, equivalent to a 60 Watt incandescent light bulb
* Lifetime of more than 25,000 hours, which is 25X greater than a typical incandescent bulb
* Color Rendering Index (CRI) greater than 90, which is a high measure of lighting quality
* Color Temperature between 2700-3000K, (“warm” white light)

The Philips submission will now undergo comprehensive evaluation, including performance testing conducted by independent laboratories, field assessments conducted with utilities and other partners, long-term lumen maintenance testing and stress testing under extreme conditions. Consumer pricing and retail availability have yet to be determined. In addition to the significant cash prize, the first manufacturer to fully meet the competition’s requirements will also be in consideration for federal purchasing agreements, utility programs and other incentives.

Every year, it is estimated that more than 425 million 60W incandescent light bulbs are sold in the United States alone, representing approximately 50% of the domestic incandescent light bulb market.

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ENERGY STAR LED Products Arrive

To strengthen user confidence in LED products, the Department of Energy established ENERGY STAR criteria for LED fixtures that went into effect last September. Recently, the first products were introduced….

To strengthen user confidence in LED products, the Department of Energy established ENERGY STAR criteria for LED fixtures that went into effect last September. Recently, the first products were introduced. In this article I wrote for the July issue of TED magazine, the ENERGY STAR criteria are discussed along with several perspectives on its significance and what’s available to lighting practitioners.

Check it out on Page 76 of TED’s digital edition for the July issue here.

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NEMA’s LampRecycle.org Gets a Fresh Face

NEMA recently launched the re-designed LampRecycle.org site to better provide a one-stop source of information about recycling mercury-containing lamps. One of the new features allows visitors to find CFL drop-off…

NEMA recently launched the re-designed LampRecycle.org site to better provide a one-stop source of information about recycling mercury-containing lamps. One of the new features allows visitors to find CFL drop-off locations near them with the help of Earth911.com.

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Mercury-containing lamps can be recognized by the Hg symbol on the lamp—the universally recognized elemental symbol for mercury (all fluorescent and most HID lamps contain a tiny amount of mercury). Depending on the nature of the exposure, mercury can be harmful to human health, and it is important that lamps and other products containing mercury be properly managed at the end of life to reduce exposure to the environment.

“The NEMA website is now much easier to use, and we hope it will help individuals and businesses learn about the importance of lamp recycling and take the appropriate steps to recycle their used mercury-containing bulbs,” said Jennifer Dolin, Manager of Sustainability and Environmental Affairs for OSRAM SYLVANIA.

Click here to visit the new and improved NEMA website.

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