Category: LED + SSL

Ten Years of LED Rebates

While rebates for commercial lighting have been around since the 1980s, rebates for LEDs specifically didn’t see widespread acceptance until 2011. Now, 10 years later, we can take an in-depth look at LED rebates and the marketplace.

A big factor in getting LEDs to gain traction so quickly was the availability of rebates to help offset initial cost. While rebates for commercial lighting have been around since the 1980s, rebates for LEDs specifically didn’t see widespread acceptance until 2011.

Now, 10 years later, we can take an in-depth look at LED rebates and the marketplace.

Rebate fulfillment firm BriteSwitch analyzed how LED rebates have evolved over the years and took at look what’s next, here.

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Million LED Challenge in Full Swing

Are you aware of the Million LED Challenge in California? This program is a collaborative effort by the University of California, California State University, California Community Colleges, and the California State Department of General Services. It recently expanded to include options for converting linear fluorescent lighting to LED.

Are you aware of the Million LED Challenge in California? Launched in 2018, this program is a collaborative effort by the University of California, California State University, California Community Colleges, and the California State Department of General Services. Based on research, this program offers a simple, cost-effective way to replace traditional lighting with LED. The goal is to promote adoption of high-quality LED lighting in California government buildings, public universities and college campuses, and among public institution staff, students, faculty, and alumni.

In March 2021, the program announced it expanded options to include high-quality linear LED lamps, retrofit kits, and luminaires (as replacements for linear fluorescents) in addition to the A-lamps, PAR-lamps, and downlights previously available in the program.

Though most LEDs are superior in performance compared to fluorescents, choosing LED light sources can be challenging due to variances in color characteristics, controllability, and longevity. To help consumers navigate these options, the UC Davis California Lighting Technology Center (CLTC) developed a Quality Specification for Linear LED Retrofit Solutions based on recently completed research.

Click here to learn more about the program.

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PNNL Estimates Energy Savings for Advanced LED Lighting

A study funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) estimates the energy savings opportunity associated with advanced lighting research conducted by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) related to glare, flicker, color rendering, non-visual effects of lighting, and outdoor environmental effects of lighting.

A study funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) estimates the energy savings opportunity associated with advanced lighting research conducted by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) related to glare, flicker, color rendering, non-visual effects of lighting, and outdoor environmental effects of lighting.

Part one of the study, conducted by Skumatz Economic Research Associates (SERA), was designed to estimate the buyer value of advanced lamps and luminaires. SERA’s research focused on three lighting product categories: commercial 4-foot linear LED luminaires, residential general service LED lamps, and street/roadway luminaires. These products were selected as representatives of the larger market sectors from which they were drawn (commercial, residential, and outdoor). Using descriptions of hypothetical future luminaires likely to result from PNNL research, SERA queried potential buyers of luminaires, asking for their views on the value of these luminaires. SERA then analyzed the responses using a purchase-price effects methodology, similar to that used by utility energy efficiency programs to estimate difficult-to-quantify non-energy benefits. Using this methodology, SERA estimated the value perceived by buyers of future products containing technologies or features likely to result from PNNL research.

Part two of the study, conducted by Guidehouse Consulting, applied the SERA estimates of value as inputs to the lighting market model used by DOE to estimate future energy savings from advanced lamps and luminaires. Developed by Guidehouse for the DOE Lighting R&D program, this model has been used by DOE for more than a decade to estimate the energy savings potential of LED technology. The model translated SERA’s findings into estimates of energy saving opportunity.

Key findings include:

• Advanced LED products added 334 tBtu of source energy savings to projected LED energy savings in 2035. That’s an additional 31 billion kWh of electricity saved in U.S. buildings in 2035, above and beyond what LEDs are already expected to provide, and equivalent to about 10% of total lighting energy use across commercial, outdoor, and residential sectors in the year 2035.
• Surveyed lighting users saw substantial value in the lighting improvements sought from planned research, with incremental long-term perceived values equivalent to 43 – 46% of the estimated baseline luminaire prices.

The findings also confirm that the methodology used holds promise for identifying energy-saving opportunities that may be difficult to quantify for advanced features.

To learn more, download the full report.

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2021 DOE/IES Lighting R&D Workshop Goes Virtual

Join the U.S. Department of Energy and the Illuminating Engineering Society at the 18th annual Lighting R&D Workshop, February 1–4, 2021, where top lighting scientists and industry thought leaders will gather to share progress, challenges, ideas, and solutions to shape the future of lighting. The 2021 workshop will be virtual and free to attend.

Join the U.S. Department of Energy and the Illuminating Engineering Society at the 18th annual Lighting R&D Workshop, February 1–4, 2021, where top lighting scientists and industry thought leaders will gather to share progress, challenges, ideas, and solutions to shape the future of lighting. The 2021 workshop will be virtual and free to attend.

The event will include interactive expert panel discussions to dissect complex scientific and technology issues; topic table sessions seeking input for future research planning; and a poster session showcasing top research by research organizations and students. (Students: Submit your abstract by December 4 for the Student Poster and Design Competition.)

Click here to learn more and register.

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DOE Study Examines Age-Related Changes in LED Device Efficiency and Optical Performance

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently released a study investigating age-related changes in LED device efficiency and optical performance.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently released a study investigating age-related changes in LED device efficiency and optical performance.

Lighting application efficiency (LAE)—the efficient delivery of light from the light source to the lighted task—is a useful way to identify and improve the energy productivity of LED technologies. Because of their high reliability, light source efficiency, and spectral tuning capabilities, LED lighting products are expected to exceed their conventional counterparts in LAE. The new study aimed to increase understanding of the tradeoffs involved in optimizing the different elements of LAE: light source efficiency, optical delivery efficiency, spectral efficiency, and intensity effectiveness.

Conducted by RTI International, the study focused on products with modified spectral output, as the method of spectral modification has a significant impact on the efficiencies in question. The report summarizes the findings from up to 8,000 hours of accelerated stress testing (AST) on lamp, LED light-engine, and downlight devices. The AST included high-temperature and wet high-temperature operation.

The findings show that the optimization of spectral efficiency can come at the cost of initial light source efficiency. Furthermore, the introduction of violet LEDs can promote long-term optical delivery efficiency degradation, and the introduction of optical filters or new phosphors can lead to unwanted spectral efficiency changes, because the ratio of phosphor emitters changes with aging.

Other key findings:

• Chromaticity maintenance of the products was generally good, with parametric failure only occurring for one product at one AST condition.
• Longer test times are needed to fully understand the luminous flux maintenance, luminous efficacy changes, and chromaticity shifts for some of the products.
• The study identified a common failure location in six-inch downlights.

The study results provide valuable information about changes to the light source, spectral, and optical delivery efficiencies as the devices age. This information can be used to improve future SSL designs.

Click here to see the report.

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DOE Releases LED Adoption Report

The latest edition of the DOE report, Adoption of Light-Emitting Diodes in Common Lighting Applications, models the state of the U.S. general-lighting market as of 2018 and provides analysis on realized and potential energy saving benefits associated with LED lamps and luminaires.

The latest edition of the DOE report, Adoption of Light-Emitting Diodes in Common Lighting Applications, models the state of the U.S. general-lighting market as of 2018 and provides analysis on realized and potential energy saving benefits associated with LED lamps and luminaires.

The new report estimates annual U.S. energy savings of 1.3 quadrillion Btu (quads) in 2018 due to LED adoption, equivalent to cost savings of $14.7 billion for consumers and about 5% of total electricity use from buildings in 2018. The theoretical potential for widespread use of the most efficient, connected LED products would amount to over 5 quads of energy savings, nearly four times greater than present energy savings and equivalent to about 20% of total building electricity use in 2018. Key findings of the report include:

  • From 2016 to 2018, installations of LED products have increased in all applications, roughly doubling to 2,325 million units or 30.0% of all general illumination lighting.
  • A-type lamps represent nearly half of all LED lighting installations and have increased to an installed penetration of 32.9% in this application. Decorative lamps have the lowest installed LED penetration presently, but nonetheless saw an increase from 7.9 to 16% from 2016 to 2018.
  • The outdoor lighting market has seen greater penetration of LEDs (51.4%) than indoor lighting (29.8%), but total LED installations are considerably higher for indoor applications (2.2 billion vs. 100 million).
  • Penetration of connected lighting controls remains small, with only 0.2% of lighting installed with these systems in 2018. However, the potential for connected controls to contribute to LED energy savings is substantial, estimated at 1.1 quads annually if fully implemented.

For indoor applications, low/high bay fixtures and A-type lamps have provided the greatest energy savings to date. The majority of potential savings, however, is associated with low/high bay and linear fixtures, which are staples of commercial and industrial buildings that require high light output and long operating hours. These buildings benefit most from connected capabilities, which are essential to realizing maximal lighting energy- and cost-savings.

The outdoor sector has seen greater LED adoption in nearly every application than the indoor sector, contributing 40% of the total energy savings from LED lighting in 2018. Utilizing the most efficient LEDs in all applications would amount to over a quad of annual energy savings in the outdoor sector alone, equivalent to about 9% of commercial building electricity use in 2018.

Click here to get the report.

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DOE Releases New SSL Energy Savings Forecast

The U.S. Department of Energy recently published the latest edition of its biannual report, Energy Savings Forecast of Solid-State Lighting in General Illumination Applications, which models the adoption of LEDs in the U.S. general-lighting market, along with associated energy savings.

The U.S. Department of Energy recently published the latest edition of its biannual report, Energy Savings Forecast of Solid-State Lighting in General Illumination Applications, which models the adoption of LEDs in the U.S. general-lighting market, along with associated energy savings.

The new report uses an updated model and extends the forecast period to 2035.

Among the findings:

  • By 2035, LED lamps and luminaires are anticipated to hold the majority of lighting installations for each of the niches examined, comprising 86% of installed stock across all categories (compared to only 6% in 2015).
  • Annual savings from LED lighting will be 5.1 quads in 2035, nearly equivalent to the total annual energy consumed by 45 million U.S. homes today, and representing a 75% reduction in energy consumption versus a no-LED scenario.
  • Most of the 5.1 quads of projected energy savings by 2035 will be attributable to two commercial lighting applications (linear and low/high-bay), one residential application (A-type), and one that crosses ­both residential and commercial (direc­tional). Connected lighting and other control technologies will be essential in achieving these savings, accounting for almost 2.3 quads of the total.
  • From 2015 to 2035, a total cumulative energy savings of 62 quads – equivalent to nearly $630 billion in avoided energy costs – is possible if the DOE SSL Program goals for LED efficacy and connected lighting are achieved.

Click here to download the report.

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What You Need to Know About LED Drivers

This blog post by OSRAM discusses the importance of the LED driver, the quality of which can significantly impact LED product performance, reliability, and lifetime.

This blog post by OSRAM discusses the importance of the LED driver, the quality of which can significantly impact LED product performance, reliability, and lifetime.

The article begins:

It’s a bit dramatic, but think of an LED driver as the ‘heart’ of an LED fixture. You want one with the most important specifications and quality level you can get, and you want it to last. You don’t want it to poorly affect your LED fixture and how it operates on a daily basis. If possible, you want it to operate at an optimum level for the life of your fixture and make the luminaire look great. Be aware that beautiful fixtures with sub-par drivers often do not meet their anticipated potential.

Click here to read this article, which discusses the role of the LED driver and its performance attributes which bear scrutiny during specification.

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Phase 2 of the Next Generation Lighting Systems Indoor Evaluations Is Open for Submissions

The Next Generation Lighting Systems (NGLS) program is launching Phase 2 of its evaluations of connected lighting systems for indoor spaces. The deadline for new participating manufacturers to submit prequalifying documentation is May 17.

The Next Generation Lighting Systems (NGLS) program is launching Phase 2 of its evaluations of connected lighting systems for indoor spaces.

Organized by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solid-State Lighting Program in partnership with the Illuminating Engineering Society and the International Association of Lighting Designers, NGLS evaluates today’s connected lighting systems in real-world installations, in order to identify challenges in installation and operation, reveal needed product improvements, and articulate principles and best practices that will reduce configuration complexity and enable system performance to meet expectations.

Phase 1, which began in July 2017, evaluated 12 systems. Phase 2 will include the upgrade of those 12 existing systems as well as the addition of new systems. The new systems will be limited to LED luminaires with integral, luminaire-level sensors and controls that are marketed as being easy to install and configure and are intended for contractor setup and configuration without onsite support from manufacturers.

The deadline for new participating manufacturers to submit prequalifying documentation is May 17. Those who prequalify will submit a complete system of luminaires, integrated controls, and supplemental equipment based on a specified room layout and design parameters. Single-manufacturer entrants and partnerships are allowed, and products that are not yet commercially available can be entered. Systems will be evaluated in a multiphase process that will be spread out over a minimum of two years and will involve installation, commissioning, control operation, lighting quality, and user response.

The systems will be permanently installed in accessible working spaces at Parsons School of Design, The New School, in New York City, with each system lighting and controlling its own space – providing a “living lab” in which participating manufacturers will be able to observe the installation and commissioning phase and utilize their installations for further system development and technology improvement. Findings will be published as each phase is completed and will include such elements as the time required and challenges faced in design, installation, and configuration; the energy savings achieved; and the degree of user acceptance and satisfaction.

Click here to learn more.

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Farmers Increase Dairy Cow Milk Production Using LED Lighting

LUX recently published an article about how dairy farmers in the UK are using LED lighting regimes to optimize dairy cow hormones and thereby increase milk production.

Wikipedia Commons

LUX recently published an article about how dairy farmers in the UK are using LED lighting regimes to optimize dairy cow hormones and thereby increase milk production.

The article states:

Milking cows exposed to 16 to 18 hours of light with a brightness of at least 160-200 lux followed by six to eight hours of darkness have consistently increased their milk yield.

Click here to read the article.

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