Month: October 2009

MAKE Magazine Explores The LED

Take a tour through the world of the light-emitting diode and learn who invented it, how to use it, and how to make your own with this fascinating short video…

Take a tour through the world of the light-emitting diode and learn who invented it, how to use it, and how to make your own with this fascinating short video courtesy of MAKE Magazine:



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U.S. Architecture Firm Annual Billings Top $40 Billion

In the three-year period leading up to the current recession, gross billings at U.S. architecture firms increased nearly $16 billion from 2005 and totaled $44.3 billion in 2008. This equates…

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In the three-year period leading up to the current recession, gross billings at U.S. architecture firms increased nearly $16 billion from 2005 and totaled $44.3 billion in 2008. This equates to 54% growth over the three-year period with annual growth of about 16%.

These findings are from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Business of Architecture: AIA Survey Report on Firm Characteristics, which is conducted every three years to examine issues related to the business practices of AIA member-owned architecture firms. The study also revealed sizeable gains in the number of firms doing green design projects.

Top 10 sectors served by architects in 2008:

Healthcare: 18.2%
Office space: 11.3%
Education (K-12): 9.0%
Education (college/university): 9.0%
Retail, food services: 8.4%
Government / civic: 5.9%
Hospitality: 4.8%
Industrial: 3.6%
Transportation: 2.9%
Recreational: 2.3%

One-half (50%) of architecture firms report green design practices, up from 31% of firms in 2005.

Click here for more in-depth analysis of the report.

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Your Moment of Zen: Kinetic Sculpture at BMW Museum

Take a relaxing ride with Berlin Agency Art+Com‘s kinetic sculpture at the BMW Museum. From Art+Com’s website: The Kinetic Sculpture is a metaphorical translation of the process of form-finding in…

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Take a relaxing ride with Berlin Agency Art+Com‘s kinetic sculpture at the BMW Museum. From Art+Com’s website:

The Kinetic Sculpture is a metaphorical translation of the process of form-finding in art and design. 714 metal spheres, hanging from thin steel wires attached to individually-controlled stepper motors and covering the area of six square meters, animate a seven minute long mechatronic narrative. In the beginning, moving chaotically, then evolving to several competing forms that eventually resolve to the finished object, the kinetic sculpture creates an artistic visualisation of the process of form-finding in different variations.

If you’re can’t visit yourself, check out the below video, complete with an easy listening jam.



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Bulbrite’s LED Retrofit Candle

Bulbrite‘s LED Retrofit Candle features a unique, shimmering, flamelike movement effect due to patented electronics. Its intended market includes a variety of applications including churches, theaters, pubs, hotels, historic homes…

bulbriteBulbrite‘s LED Retrofit Candle features a unique, shimmering, flamelike movement effect due to patented electronics. Its intended market includes a variety of applications including churches, theaters, pubs, hotels, historic homes and buildings, offering a realistic lamp replacement option for 120V lighting fixtures with standard candelabra (E12) sockets. I have not seen one in action yet, but Bulbrite claims it provides the same realistic ambient light as a traditional candle, but of course is safer to use, and even more economical over time. The product is 5.5 inches in total height, ¾ of an inch wide and draws 1.5W.

Click here for more information.

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North American Electroindustry Business Confidence Index Improves for Second Straight Month

NEMA’s Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American conditions increased for a third straight month—and topped the 50-point threshold indicative of expansion for a second straight month—in September….

NEMA’s Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American conditions increased for a third straight month—and topped the 50-point threshold indicative of expansion for a second straight month—in September.

The index rose 5.3 points to 58.6, its highest reading since April 2006 and more than 50 points above its cyclical low of 8 in December 2008.

The EBCI for future North American conditions also climbed in September, reaching its highest level—69.0—since August 2005. This reading implies that a significant proportion of industry leaders foresees 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.

ebci-september-2009

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August 2009 Construction Spending at $941.9 Annual Rate

Construction spending during August 2009 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $941.9 billion, 0.8% above the revised July estimate of $934.6 billion and 11.6%, or $124.2 billion,…

Construction spending during August 2009 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $941.9 billion, 0.8% above the revised July estimate of $934.6 billion and 11.6%, or $124.2 billion, below the August 2008 estimate of $1,066.1 billion. During the first eight months of 2009, construction spending reached $629.5 billion, 11.9% below the $714.3 billion for the same period in 2008.

Residential spending gained ground over the summer, increasing from about $247 billion in July 2009 to $257.4 in August 2009, a 4.2% increase, but is still 26% off from August 2008, when spending was estimated at $347.8 billion.

Nonresidential construction declined slightly in August. Private nonresidential construction remained about the same at $372.6 billion, a 10.5% decline from August 2008. Public nonresidential construction declined slightly (-0.9%) to $311.9 billion, but spending remains 3.3% above August 2008.

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New Lumiette Flat Panel Lights Make Their Way Into The Wild

Lumiette Inc. has announced that it is is donating 300 of its flat panel light fixtures to the Wildlife Conservation Network Solar Project. Shipped out to Africa and Mongolia over…

Photo courtesy of Wildlife Conservation Network, Save the Elephants,  Iain Douglas Hamilton.

Photo courtesy of Wildlife Conservation Network, Save the Elephants, Iain Douglas Hamilton.

Lumiette Inc. has announced that it is is donating 300 of its flat panel light fixtures to the Wildlife Conservation Network Solar Project.

Shipped out to Africa and Mongolia over the new few months, the lights will help provide low-energy-use, high-intensity illumination for conservationists and scientists working to sustain and protect cheetahs, elephants, lions, snow leopards and other endangered wildlife. Because the flat panel lamps are designed for compatibility with solar electricity generation, they can serve as part of entirely green installations.

The Lumiette Undercabinet Light Fixtures incorporate the next-generation 1203 Flat Panel Lamp (FPL), which offers a millimeters-thin design enabling a fixture that is one-half inch thick, 12.5 inches long and 5 inches wide. The lamp is controlled by a compatible dimmer.

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Lighting for Tomorrow 2009 Winners Announced

The seventh annual Lighting for Tomorrow competition recognized the best-designed energy-efficient lighting products in the residential market. This year resulted in several unique winners given the many changes made to…

maxlite-flat-panelThe seventh annual Lighting for Tomorrow competition recognized the best-designed energy-efficient lighting products in the residential market. This year resulted in several unique winners given the many changes made to the 2009 entry categories, as Lighting for Tomorrow challenged manufacturers to push the envelope by hosting the first ever fluorescent dimming competition and expanding the range of eligible solid state lighting (SSL) applications. The 2009 judging panel reviewed a total of 74 products that use energy-efficient lighting technology, 43 SSL models incorporating LEDs and 31 fluorescent dimming entries.

Two grand prize winners were selected: past winner Cree LED Lighting for its High Output 6-Inch Downlight and Philips Color Kinetics for its eW Cove Powercore. The remaining awards were to acknowledge the successful incorporation of important design considerations and each product received a special focus award for its different strengths. New Jersey-based MaxLite received a special focus award for light distribution with its LED Architect Flat Panel. Lightolier earned a special focus award for versatility for Calculite Solid-State. Newcomer Creative Systems Lighting received a special focus award for ease of installation for its Eco Counter product. Cree LED Lighting also received two special focus awards for high efficiency and technical innovation for its high efficacy 6-inch downlight and SSL track fixture, respectively.

Of the 12 companies that competed in the fluorescent dimming competition, 5 different manufacturers were recognized. American Fluorescent received three separate awards: the Genesis sconce was awarded the grand prize in the moderate price category, the Portman linear flush-mount was selected as a winner, and the Madison pendant received an honorable mention. Ivalo Lighting Company’s Aliante sconce received a grand prize award in the high-end price category and requires a custom dimmer to achieve high quality dimming. California-based, Designers Fountain linear fluorescent Versa-LUX dimming fixture was recognized as a winner. Philips Lighting Company won in both the dimming CFL and reflector lamp categories. Cherry Tree Design, from Montana, received an honorable mention for its Cirrus fixture.

versalux-pendant-by-designers-fountainAwards were presented at the American Lighting Association Annual Conference in Palos Verdes, CA on September 15, 2009. The competition is designed to stimulate the market for attractive, energy-efficient residential lighting fixtures that use a fraction of the electricity of standard incandescent fixtures. By encouraging new designs and technologies, Lighting for Tomorrow aims to increase market acceptance and awareness of the growing opportunities in energy-efficient lighting.

Winners will be showcased in four publications: 1) a Dimming Brochure featuring the fluorescent dimming fixtures and lamps, 2) a SSL Brochure, highlighting the LED-based winners, 3) a new construction brochure aimed at home builders that highlights products they may be interested in, and 4) a consumer brochure providing a quick snap shot of the highest scoring products.

Click here to learn more about the competition and the winning products.

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Philips Lumileds Opens Office in Shanghai

Philips Lumileds has opened a new office in Shanghai that is being staffed with an applications team and market specialists to support the growing number of companies in China developing…

luxeons_smallPhilips Lumileds has opened a new office in Shanghai that is being staffed with an applications team and market specialists to support the growing number of companies in China developing solid-state lighting solutions. The applications team and specialists will support customers by providing optical, thermal and electrical LED design expertise, supporting rapid development and market entry for new LUXEON LED-based products.

The new Philips Lumileds office complements an engineering and design center operated by Philips Lumileds’ partner, Future Lighting Solutions. With state-of-the-art optical, thermal and mechanical design and test equipment, this resource can help reduce development times, provide technical knowledge and training, and help customers deliver more reliable and efficient lighting solutions. Philips Lumileds also maintains customer application support teams at its headquarters in San Jose, California and in Eindhoven in the Netherlands.

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