This blog entry continues my series of answers to the eternal question: What did you see that was new at (insert trade show name)? The trade show of the moment is Lightfair 2009, held May 5 to 7 in the Big Apple. The subject of this posting is LED “lamp” units.
One of the prevailing product-introduction categories at the show was LED-based replacements for conventional lamps. While there has been much talk and excitement in recent years about LED technology, I have always believed that talk about the technology itself was irrelevant to the specifier/end user and really only of interest to research scientists and manufacturers. It has been my opinion that the only thing that will matter to the specifier/end user is what form factors the manufacturers will be able to deliver to the marketplace and how well will they be able to produce “lamps” that fit into existing fixtures. Based on what I saw at Lightfair, it looks like the manufacturers are finding great success delivering LED-based lamps that will function in existing fixtures. Heat dissipation is clearly still a major issue, but design innovation seems to be overcoming that hurdle and I heard one mention of progress developing heat-resistant LED packages.
One standout example of an LED lamp that will function in existing fixtures was the prototype LR6 LED recessed downlight, shown by Cree LED Lighting Solutions Inc., Durham, NC. The prototype delivers 665 lumens while consuming 6.5 W of electricity with an efficacy of 102 lumens per watt and a power factor greater than 0.9. The lamp features the company’s TrueWhite technology, which produces a 92 CRI (color-rendering index) and a 3500 K color temperature. The memorable part of the demonstration I saw was the lamp’s ability to render true reds, an important feature for the retail industry.—Gary L. Parr