I, Dr. Bulb, was so caught up in lighting technology and all the illuminating possibilities that I forgot to sit down and blog at LightFair International (LFI)! For two days, I absorbed exciting information about new trends and innovative products that are changing the lighting industry at LightFair, the world’s largest annual architectural and commercial lighting trade show and conference. I also tried to get lighting celebrities to autograph my LED wallpacks and LED bollard lights to no avail.
For the past several years, LFI has been nicknamed the LEDfair—because almost everything introduced that illuminates is LED! While emerging technology involving light-emitting plasma was also on display, it was overwhelmed by the countless exciting new LED products and technology.
Here are some of the fascinating trends that I observed up at LFI:
With effective lighting control systems, physical plant managers are able to monitor lighting and remotely dial down power use with a cellular connection. Commands can be sent to wireless nodes throughout the property, ultimately increasing system efficacy and reducing overall power use when prudent or required.
The price of LED chips has fallen and the light output of the chips has increased, which is exactly what I love to hear! Because of this, luminaires can now be cost effectively produced with the same net lumen output level as luminaires with 150, 175, 250, or 400 watt metal halide or high-pressure sodium lamps be sold reasonable price.
As the lumen output and efficacy of LED chips has increased, significant light output can be achieved while driving the LED chips at a lower amperage. For instance many LED drivers can now be set at 350mA instead of 700mA, decreasing heat generated and radically increasing life. Quality LEDs in luminaires can now approach a life of 70,000 to 100,000 hours which is over 20 years of continuous use at 12 hours per day! The issue will change from the effective length of an LED chip’s life to how long a driver will last.
Credible new standards are being set by certain companies. The bar has been raised!
Ushio has introduced a candelabra lamp with an innovative LED filament design. Using only .6 watts, it emulates a 15-20 watt candelabra lamp equivalent and lasts over 40,000 hours.
Soraa announced a new full spectrum 95 CRI MR16, which has the same light output as the 65-watt halogen equivalent. This extraordinary lamp fits perfectly where a standard halogen MR16 fits.
Toshiba’s new outdoor area light is an excellent example of trends and pricing of LED luminaires, emitting out 20% more light at 30% less cost!
I, Dr. Bulb, was thrilled to see and hear about the new trends and products, but I’m still waiting for the Holy Grail, an LED equivalent of a 1,000 watt area light. While there are some claims that this can be done, the Holy Grail still remains elusive.
LightFair ends April 25th and then I am left counting down the days to LightFair International. Next year LightFair will be in Las Vegas! Until then, make sure to follow @doctorbulb on Twitter and subscribe to my blog.