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Home > Feature Articles > Alternative Energy Solutions > Lighting

Product Development of Solid State Lighting (SSL) Luminaires

Energy Star specifications research for Solid State Lighting (SSL) Luminaires

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Energy Star Standards for Solid State Lighting (SSL)

2007 - DOE is currently developing a new ENERGY STAR specification for solid state lighting Luminaires.

The draft ENERGY STAR Program Requirements for Solid State Lighting (SSL) Luminaires intended for general illumination. SSL general illumination devices are not presently covered by any ENERGY STAR product category, although there are other product categories using light emitting diodes (LEDs) for non-illumination purposes, including indication and decoration.

DOE will lead ENERGY STAR management, specification development, and partner relations for SSL devices used for general illumination, including:

  • Residential, commercial, industrial, and outdoor lighting SSL applications of all types
  • Innovative SSL systems applications of all types (includes "free-form" SSL systems, and those incorporated into furniture, buildings, and equipment)
Solid-state lighting differs fundamentally from traditional lighting technologies in terms of materials, drivers, system architecture, controls, and photometric properties. A host of new test procedures and industry standards is needed to accommodate these technical differences.

To accelerate the development of needed standards for SSL products, DOE is facilitating ongoing dialogue and collaboration with key standards setting organizations, and offering technical assistance in the development of new standards. Development of the key standards and test procedures needed to support the new SSL program requirements have been on a fast track since March, 2006, and are scheduled to be completed prior to the effective date of the new program requirements.

Energy Star Solid State Lighting Standards

California Lighting Technology Center

California Lighting Technology Center has been jointly working on the Personal Lighting System with Finelite. This energy efficiency group encourages ENERGY STAR team members to develop requirements for fair and widely accessible standards not driven strictly by commercial interests.

The California Technology Center submitted a variety of comments to the Energy Star study of Solid State Lighting Standards, including the following excerpts.

Under-cabinet and shelf-mounted luminaires can serve at least two purposes: 1) They can provide task lighting for the task plane directly below the luminaire. 2) They can balance the luminance values of the user’s visual environment.

Existing technologies for under-cabinet lighting have often performed poorly in this environment. LED technology may correct this, but following existing fluorescent system design under-serves the industry and the end user. Matching system performance to a lumens per foot metric requires certain minimum power levels or lumen density to be used for these types of fixtures where lower levels would be better.

LED’s (with advanced optics) may extend the abilities of asymmetrical systems in novel and useful ways. Ultimately, the performance of any task light is a function of its illuminance capabilities, and these may not conform well to a single zonal lumen metric.

As an energy efficiency center, we support elimination of power supply loads whenever possible, and agree with CEE’s sentiment that zero off state power consumption is a laudable goal. One concern, however, relates to consumer confusion between existing ENERGY STAR standards for power adapters and how those will relate to power adapters used in SSL lighting products, which are essentially electronic devices. Ultimately, the requirement for zero off state power consumption seems to be a hardware issue: physical switching of the load requires that AC power is brought to the luminaire.

LED arrays can exhibit different temperatures from one LED to another – this is dependent on LED spacing, the type of heat sink used, and other power density issues that may occur. One LED measurement may not be representative of the average or high Tj seen in the system, and therefore the array may not perform consistently with a manufacture’s specification for individually qualified LED’s. Testing all of the LED’s in an array could be cost prohibitive, so more guidance on where (or which LED) to measure would be helpful.

Submitted by:
Kevin Gauna
California Lighting Technology Center
kwgauna@ucdavis.edu
510.215.2884



Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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