newsletter link
mondo arc

2014: The year the LED landscape changed forever

Issue 82 December / January 2014

As two giants of the electronics industry look to bow out of the global LED sales market, our resident technology expert Dr Geoff Archenhold looks back at a year of shock announcements and well deserved recognition.

What a difference a year makes to the lighting industry! Who would have guessed that two of the biggest lighting players would have signalled their intention to exit the Solid-State Lighting systems arena. I am talking about the news that Philips is to exit LED manufacturing after announcing it was going to sell Philips Lumileds and then Samsung announced it will withdraw from global LED lighting sales.

I predicted, in a presentation for the Lighting Industry Federation (LIF) five years ago, that Philips would be out of the lighting market within the next decade and of course there were roars of laughter at the time from the packed audience. However, that moment of madness has been realised by the shock announcement that Philips is divesting all of its lighting assets and not just LED manufacturing. What I didn’t predict five years ago was the withdrawal of Samsung from the LED lighting market (but not LED manufacturing) and this is perhaps a bigger surprise than the Philips announcement.

Of course lighting has always innovated and changed, whether it was with the development of fluorescent lamps, HID lamps and more recently LEDs, but the announcement by Philips stating that it was looking to split off the lighting division into a completely separate entity will have a much bigger effect than just on the company itself. Europe has been a very difficult marketplace for global companies to penetrate due to the two powerhouses of Philips and Osram. However, becoming individual entities in their own right makes them much more vulnerable to market forces providing an ideal opportunity for competitors to take a foothold within the market over the next decade.

My view is that perhaps Philips Lighting may survive and thrive much like Acuity Brands did when it was divested in a similar manner. However, they are a predominantly US-based business with much more flexible labour laws, whereas Philips’ and, to a certain degree Osram’s, senior management team are restricted by trade unions and European labour laws that resist the vital restructuring that is most likely needed to transform Europe’s lighting leaders into vehicles that can compete on a global stage.

Global businesses (>USD 5 billion turnover) that bring scale, production and marketing experience will only be good for consumers. However, the long term effects on keeping Europe at the forefront of lighting technology will be significantly diminished as R&D budgets and staffing will generally fall and diffuse into much smaller (and possibly more innovative and agile) companies.

There will be many reasons why the Philips and Samsung CEO’s and key shareholders will have decided to spin-off or shut-down their lighting divisions including poor group financial results, low growth, high competition, margin erosion and high overheads. However, the key overriding factor for change has been the transition to new technologies such as LED lighting and OLEDs. When rapid industry change occurs the larger companies cannot evolve quickly enough to the new environment, a bit like the dinosaurs that failed to adapt to a different climate and as such became extinct.

In the meantime however, the pace of technology change in LEDs and OLEDs is accelerating faster and faster and we are only just beginning to enter the intelligent lighting phase of growth.

2014 has demonstrated rapid cost down in all parts of the supply chain for LED lighting whether they are LED emitters, light engines, LED drivers or complete fixtures. Such rapid cost downs will continue in 2015 resulting in rapid consolidation of established companies and a higher degree of business failures for those companies that cannot differentiate from competitors or their own technologies.

The larger players will decide how to react to market dynamics and, as we have seen with companies such as Philips, major changes could be announced in 2015 with more mergers and acquisitions.
The rate of technology improvements will begin to slow from 2015 to 2018 as higher lumens per watt figures will become less desirable compared to quality of light and cost metrics.


• Demonstrate the first 200 lm/W LED concept luminaire, which is more than twice the efficiency of the best linear fluorescent luminaires. Cree’s latest innovation delivered a 3,200 lumen concept luminaire with greater than 200 lm/W at 80 CRI at thermal equilibrium while remaining within the ANSI colour specification for 3000K. The innovations behind the concept luminaire will enable Cree to deliver increased performance in LED luminaire applications at a lower cost to accelerate LED adoption.

• Launch the ZR Series LED fixture that delivers a new category of performance, affordability and inspired design. Featuring Cree TrueWhite Technology, the ZR Series LED troffer delivers superior colour quality (> 90 CRI) in an ultra-slim, sleek package at a remarkable initial price of $99. The ZR Series LED fixture cuts energy consumption in half, and with standard 0–10V dimming, can accelerate its already rapid two-year payback.

• Launch the 6000 lumen LMH2 LED module, the industry’s brightest module to offer colour-quality greater than 90 CRI at a consistent efficacy of 85 lumens per watt across a wide range of colour temperatures (3000K, 3500K and 4000K). The no-compromise LED solution is the ideal replacement for 100W ceramic metal halide lamps in high-ceiling applications, using 30 percent less power, lasting three times as long and delivering instant-on, dimmable light. Lighting manufacturers looking to shorten the time-to-market for their luminaire design can also take advantage of the LMD600, Cree’s cost-effective, universal driver that is designed to power the new 6000 lumen LHM2. Dimmable to one percent, the LmD600 is optimised for a controllable, indoor architectural environment.

• Announce it is expanding its capacity for InGaAlP LEDs by switching its fabrication of red, orange and yellow light emitting diodes to 6-inch wafers which will expand production capabilities at its manufacturing plant in Regensburg, Germany. Such coloured LEDs are generally used within the Automotive and Architectural lighting application areas and larger wafers enable lower costs and higher production volumes.

• Introduce the new generation of Mega ZENIGATA COB LED with high-efficiency XFC models in the 15, 25, 35 and 50 wattage classes. The devices are available in CCT values of 2700K, 3000K, 4000K and 5000K and with CRI options of 80+ and high CRI 90+ for the 25W series. The XFC series is based upon a ceramic substrate to enable a low thermal resistance of 1.8 C/W typically. The COB is made with 84 LED die configured as 12 in series and 7 parallel chains to provide a 35.5V dc typical forward voltage and up to 1000mA forward current.


• Launch a brand new range of Xitanium mini drivers, specifically designed for CoB track spot luminaires. The Xitanium 36W/m 0.3-1.05A 48V 230V and Xitanium 20W/m 0.15-0.5A 48V 230V miniaturised housing make these the smallest LED drivers with window functionality, matching the housing of the HID CDM drivers used for this application. Two products were launched to cover the 1100-2000 lm and 2000-3000 lm CoB track spots. 


• Launch the XNOVA Chip-On-Board (COB) LED arrays in mass production, and are immediately recognised for their leading efficacy with 145 lumens per watt at 5000K and 132 lm/W at 3000K both at 80 CRI. The 95 CRI minimum ‘Accuwhite’ series catches the industry’s attention and the fact that all of the XNOVA COBs are specified and tested in production at 85C to ensure consistent, high performance in real-world application conditions. The XNOVA COB LED portfolio offers a wide range of devices with Light Emitting Surface (LES) from 6mm to 27mm. Products are currently available with 80, 90 or 95 minimum CRI and colour temperatures of 2700K, 3000K, 3500K, 4000K, 5000K and 6500K.

• Update the XLamp CXA2590, CXA1850 and CXA1310 High-Density LED Arrays by doubling the light output of existing standard-density CXA LED arrays without increasing the size, redefining what is possible for LED lighting in high-intensity applications. By emitting more than 15,500 lumens from a 19mm light source, the CXA2590 LED Array enables luminaires with the same centre-beam candlepower (CBCP) and light quality of a 150 watt CMH light source at lower power, longer lifetime and with better control. Delivering more than 9,000 lumens from a 12mm light source, the CXA1850 LED Array enables lighting solutions with the same CBCP and light quality as 70 watt CMH while using half the power. The CXA1310 LED Array provides more than 2,000 lumens in a 6mm light source, which allows lighting manufacturers to design smaller, more-efficient track lights, reduce the size of halogen replacements by half and deliver twice the CBCP of CMH at 30 percent less power.


• Launch the CertaFlux LED Line 2ft 1550 lm/2200 lm, a new proposition targeting volume OEMs that are active in the wholesale trade segment and looking for good specifications, which meet the requirements of basic lighting. It offers the lowest initial costs for product performance, meeting most market applications with an efficiency level at 95 lm/W.

• For Outdoor lighting applications Philips launch the new range of Xitanium programmable drivers, Xitanium 75W and 150W 0.70A Prog+ 230V-F  sXt, available with both full and lite programmable options. The specification includes a larger operating window with output current up to 1A, lower minimum output voltage, an increased Tcase, improved EMI performance and integrated surge protection up to 4Kv. The drivers offer new features such as LineSwitch, SoftStart and Power Factor correction.

• Launch the state-of-the-art Optimo LED spotlight designed to deliver the optimum in creativity and efficacy. Optimo perfectly complements high street and pop-up shop interiors right through to hospitality applications and supermarkets. Delivering 2719 lumens at 36W the Optimo provides an efficacy of 75 lm/W at 3000K and 80 CRI.


• Offer, for the first time, a chip-on-board LED, the Soleriq P 9, which is suitable for compact powerful spotlights such as the ones used in retail outlets and museums. The P 9 has a light emitting surface with a diameter of only 9 mm (64 mm²) with a package dimension of 15mm x 15mm but produces an impressive 2000 lm and has a luminous efficacy of 100 lm/W (at a temperature of 85C and 3000K). The LEDs are available in both 80+ and 90+ CRI and a CCT range between 2700K to 5000K. The small light-emitting surface means that extremely compact and therefore lightweight optics can be fitted for highly compact spotlights. The spotlights are therefore less cumbersome and more cost-effective, while still providing the same luminous intensity.


• Launch the first DynaWhite Quadrum LED fixture that is fully colour tuneable between CCT values of 2700K and 5700K whilst maintaining a minimum CRI of 80+ across the CCT range. The Quadrum LED fixture is a 600mm x 600mm, flicker free, backlit LED panel offering 3500 lumens and efficacies of 100 lumens per watt enabling offices, schools and healthcare applications to replace T5 or T8 based fixtures and to allow healthy, circadian type biodynamic lighting in a cost effective manner. The first installations of the DynaWhite Quadrum panels took place in a PFI project with the NHS to deliver healthy and sympathetic light to patients.

• The Cree LED Bulb becomes the best-selling LED lamp in America after just twelve months, enabling more than $1 billion in lifetime energy savings for consumers. To further drive adoption and expand the market, Cree also introduce the first 100-watt replacement LED lamp delivering 1600 lumens while consuming just 18 watts and is available in soft white (2700K) and cool, daylight (5000K) colour temperatures.

• Introduces the XLamp XB-H LED, the brightest discrete in Cree’s high-density (HD) class of LEDs, delivering a breakthrough combination of lumen output and efficacy in a small package. The XB-H LED brings the lighting-class performance of the XP-G2 LED into a package that is 50 percent smaller. Delivering more than 500 lumens at 1.5A, 25C in a 2.45 x 2.45mm package, the Cree XB-H LED can enable luminaires that use the same-size-footprint XB-D LED to triple their light output at the same efficacy.

• Launch the XTM module that covers a new design for the company’s Corrected Cold Phosphor Technology that was being produced on the new manufacturing line in San Jose. The Zhaga compatible product delivers 100 lumens per watt or more at operating temperature. A lower cost and higher efficacy product that retains all of Xicato’s quality of light attributes fundamentally shifted perception of the company and XTM has quickly become the company’s best-selling module.


• Through its Concord brand expands its award-winning Beacon range by adding the state-of-the-art Beacon Major mains voltage LED spotlight to its family. The new spotlight offers an impressive fixture lumen output of up to 1551lm and, by running directly from the mains, does not require a separate LED driver to operate. This innovation saves on installation time and cost compared to halogen or metal halide.


• Launch their integrated control LED module, XIM (Xicato Intelligent Module). The XIM unit integrates communications, controls, sensors, software and a light source into one compact light engine. Xicato claims that by bringing the critical electronics together, it makes the system more reliable, easier to integrate and provides a foundation for exploring new business models based on lighting.

Shrinking Corrected Cold Phosphor Technology into a significantly smaller footprint, XIM retains all the benefits of the patented phosphor cooling technology and quality of light and created space into which chips and electronics have been incorporated. With virtually the same footprint as the first generation XSM, the new XIM comes in slightly taller than the previous modules.

The XIM module will solve a great deal of the anxiety that fixture manufacturers have had over the years with sub-standard LED drivers, dimming issues and controller complexities and I believe that these issues have certainly caused a great deal of frustration for everyone. Integrating the control system, sensors and a DC to DC driver into the light source certainly has many advantages and two notable ones are increased flexibility and choice of constant voltage ballasts.

By including a DC/DC drive circuit into the XIM module it means a standard low cost constant voltage supply can be used allowing a wide variety of ballast manufacturers to be chosen so gone are the days of trying to find a DALI ballast manufacturer with exactly the right format of power, connectors or approvals.

The XIM module also offers a low level of dimming down to 0.1% by using a combination of analogue and pulsed dimming which is becoming much more common place in PSU designs.


• Announce the XNOVA Sensus COB array series with CCT ranges targeted below the black body locus (BBL) to deliver a pure, crisp white, as well as rich, vivid colours. Recent studies have shown that the human perception of pure white is actually below the BBL for colour temperatures in the warm white range (3500K to 2700K). The XNOVA Sensus COB series is engineered in 2-step or 3-step McAdam ellipse colour accuracy. In addition, they are tested at 85C, where they deliver an industry leading 120 lumens/watt typical and 80 CRI minimum. Light emitting diameters are available in seven sizes from 6.3mm to 22mm, thus enabling customers to achieve a typical flux output anywhere from 470 lumens to over 7500 lumens.


• Officially announce the opening of its LED assembly plant in Wuxi, China. The factory has a floor area of about 100,000 square metres and will employ as many as 2,100 people by 2017. Osram is investing a low three-digit-million euro amount to set up the plant and the Wuxi plant will be capable of an annual output of up to several billion LEDs.

• Launch the Duris S 5 mid-power LEDs with a CRI of more than 90 for a variety of applications. The new LEDs are ideal for applications where the colours have to appear as natural as possible and their main use will be in the home. The light from the new Duris S 5 models make the colours of wooden dining tables and flooring for example look rich and natural which plays an important role in shop lighting, whether for clothing or food.

The new Duris S 5 also offers impressive output. The two-chip version has a high luminous flux value of 83 lm at 150mA (typically at 3000K) with a typical forward voltage is 6.35V.


• Introduce the new FastFlex LED board 2x4/740 Generation 2, designed to be used in Outdoor luminaires. This includes a new range of lumen output, additional 2x4 smaller size modules and two new light distributions (circular symmetric and extra wide) to offer luminaire manufacturers maximum choice and flexibility.

• Launch the XLamp XP-L LED, the first commercially available single-die LED to achieve breakthrough efficacy of up to 200 lumens per watt at 350mA. Delivering up to 1226 lumens in a 3.45mm x 3.45mm package, the game-changing Cree XLamp XP-L LED enables an immediate performance increase of 50 percent or more as a drop-in upgrade for lighting designs based on Cree’s market-leading XLamp XP-G LEDs. As the brightest member of the industry’s only family of high-density class discrete LEDs, the new XP-L LED also touts the industry’s highest optical control factor (OCF), a measurement of the impact that LED size and performance have on directional lighting applications. Characterised and binned at 1050mA, 85C, the XP-L LED is available in up to 90 CRI and colour temperatures ranging from 2700K to 8300K.

• Unveil Generation 3.0 of its award-winning LuxiTune. With a 2200 lumen emitter, equivalent to a 120W halogen lamp, the light engine delivers smooth halogen-style dimming from 1600K to 3000K and CCT tuning between 2100K and 4300K. Both tuning curves track the black body curve closely and light intensity (flux) is adjustable from 100% to less than 0.5%, giving lighting designers unprecedented creative freedom. With the complementary secondary optic, luminous efficacy is an industry-leading 63 lumens/W at steady-state temperature and CRI is 90 at full intensity, being maintained at an average of 85 as the LED is dimmed.

The light engine is DALI and DMX compatible, and delivers flicker-free operation with industry-standard analog 0-10V dimmers. Self-learning mode eliminates known issues in installations with multiple lamps on one dimmer due to varying voltage drops on long and short cables. DMX control can be used to switch between CCT tune and halogen dim modes.

LuxiTune uses a compact, single emitter to deliver warm, soft tones of dimmed light. It maintains colour quality and consistency within 3 SDCM throughout the dimming range. The multi-channel emitter platform results in more vibrant colours without some of the hue changes experienced with simpler two-colour systems. Smart feedback control ensures flux and colour stability over the life of the product and eliminates the known effects of varying light output over temperature and time from different colour dies. Furthermore, there are no perceptible flickering effects in the 100Hz to 200Hz range.


• Acquire Projection Lighting, a UK based manufacturer of LED solutions. The purchase allows the Canadian luminaire manufacturer to break into the retail and display markets.
The agreement provides for a total cash consideration of £16.6 million, including working capital of £2.9 million, subject to customary post-closing adjustments. During the twelve month period ended April 30, 2014, Projection generated revenues of £11.3 million. As a result of the deal approximately 50 new employees join Lumenpulse.


• Announce the expansion of its LED range with a family of easy-to-install luminaires for applications spanning hotels and restaurants to offices, retail stores and warehouses. The luminaires have improved thermal management and have a higher lumen output compared to when the lamps and fixtures are separate elements.

Verbatim’s recessed spotlights, with a choice of 25° or 40° beam angle and an adjustable LED head, are perfectly suited to delivering accent and spot lighting to replace halogen downlights. They are 12W and dimmable and deliver up to 720lm output with a luminous intensity of up to 3150cd. Customers can choose between either a white or chrome finish.

• Introduce LED T8 tubes, particularly suited for car parking, leisure complexes and warehouses. The tubes come with 22W (1200mm) and 28W (1500mm) power outputs, each with a 120° beam angle, and are available in warm (3000K), neutral (4000K) or cold (6500K) white. The luminous flux ranges from 1900 lm to 2600 lm. In addition, there are two 1200mm kit solutions for indoor (IP20) and outdoor (IP65) batten luminaires including an LED T8 4000K tube.

• Introduce the 4th Generation of Fortimo LED SLM by bringing the complete SLM product portfolio on to one single CoB technology platform. The family for retail and food applications consists of 4 families: Fortimo LED SLM Gen4; Fortimo LED SLM Gen4 Crisp White; Fortimo LED SLM Gen4 Food Warm White; Fortimo LED SLM Gen4 Food Premium Red

Each family offers an improved efficiency up to 130 lm/W with the flexibility to select different lumen outputs per module. One of the flagship products in this range is the Fortimo LED SLM Crisp White, which produces intense whites and rich colours, perfect for fashion retail applications and is available in two lumen packages (3000 lm and 3800 lm).

• Philips Lumileds launch its proprietary CrispWhite Technology that allows whites to appear more vivid and bright while colours appear saturated. The CrispWhite Technology has great colour rendering performance with CRI over 90 and an R9 value above 50 giving rich red and warm colours ideal for retail lighting applications.
The technology creates a second blue peak (~410-415nm) in the spectrum that activates fluorescent whitening agents paints/fabrics and is very similar to that used within the Soraa MR16 lamps. The LUXEON Chip-on-Board (CoB) CrispWhite Technology is available in multiple lumen packages, from 800 lumens all the way up to 7000 lumens to replace 70W and 100W CDM solutions. The lumen efficacy is up to 90 lm/W and is hot binned at 85C to achieve a 3-Step MacAdam Ellipse, ideal for CDM-CMH lamp replacement.


• Announce four new families of Dual Junction infrared (IR) emitters, including the world’s first 4-die versions. The 4-die LZ4 parts are currently the world’s most powerful IR emitters, delivering six times the flux density of conventional emitters to extend the range and resolution of surveillance and security systems by this factor. Single-die types deliver 70% more output than typical single junction IR emitters. In both product families each die has two serially-connected junctions, creating two radiant surfaces and boosting output. A continuous 5A pulse drive capability means that they can produce a short output burst for even greater range. The emitters are designed for IR systems operating at up to 150m.

The products address a number of fast-growing markets such as surveillance, transportation and machine vision, and newer businesses in biometrics and gesture recognition, are all looking for ways to differentiate their products through improved performance, smaller size and lower energy consumption.

• Announce a five year limited warranty for the XNOVA family of chip-on-board (COB) arrays designed for both indoor and outdoor directional lighting applications. The company introduces this warranty on the heels of completing their 6000 hour LM-80 testing which demonstrated long term colour stability and robust lumen maintenance, even under extreme conditions including both high temperature and high drive current.


• Launch the SFH 4715A OSLON Black IR LED with high typical electro-optical efficiency of 48% thanks to the latest chip generation and the optimised LED packaging. Thanks to a boost in output to 800mW (previously 630mW) the new Osram IR LED can illuminate objects over 100m away depending on the application and type of external optics.


• Announce they will start to ship 100 lm/W OLED panels with 40,000 hours lifetime. One advantage that OLED lighting has over LED architectural lighting design is its ability to offer high efficacy linear lighting solutions as well as replacing traditional 600mm x 600mm panel lights efficiently. OLEDs emit heat differently to LEDs and therefore can be made in thin form factors without the need for light guides or heatsinks which will ultimately save on production costs in the future. In general OLED fixtures are 1/10th the thickness of LED panels and the weight 1/5th which is unique from a design perspective. Current roadmaps show that OLED lighting will drop significantly over the next six years from USD200 per 1000 lumens to less than USD10 per 1000 lumens which offers an exciting proposition for certain lighting fixtures and designers.

• Launch a new class of high power LED driver solutions with the Force 12 that offers up to 320W of power in a satellite configuration allowing up to 12 LED outputs per driver to be independently controlled. The Force 12 unit can be easily positioned by mounting on walls or ceilings and offers flicker free, deep dimming characteristics for LED fixtures that require 3-48V and 100mA to 1000mA forward currents. Users of the Force 12 do not have to make a compromise on what dimming control protocols can be used for a project as it offers DALI, DSI, DMX, RDM and Ethernet connectivity as standard. The Force 12 can be positioned right next to the LED fixtures or remotely up to 100m from the fixtures and therefore has created a new class of satellite drivers.

• Announce the ZR High-Efficacy (HE) LED fixture to reduce energy consumption by 70 percent when compared to traditional fluorescent fixtures, enabling greater design freedom for customers. Cree’s vertical integration and LED lighting system development expertise has brought a commercially available 150 lumens per watt LED panel fixture to market. The ZRHE LED panel fixture features Cree TrueWhite Technology and delivers 4000 lumens of the industry’s best colour quality in both 2’ x 2’ and 2’ x 4’ configurations. With a 100,000-hour lifetime—twice as long as comparable LED troffers—and an industry-leading, 10-year limited warranty, the Cree ZRHE LED panel is the ideal replacement for healthcare, petroleum, commercial building and other applications demanding extreme reliability and long product lifetime.

• Announce a new line of LEDs with a single emitting surface that produces warmer light when dimmed. The new Natural Toning LEDs vary their colour temperatures across a range from 3000K to 2000K that requires no additional controls beyond a dimmer. The Natural Toning LEDs provide very high colour quality, with typical CRIs ranging between 92 and 94 across their intensity range. At an operating current of 350mA, the Natural Toning Mini ZENIGATA delivers up to 1000 lumens with a colour temperature of 3000K. When dimmed down to 50mA, the Mini puts out 105 lumens at 2000K. Its big brother, the Natural Toning Mega ZENIGATA, typically produces values ranging from a high of 2860 lumens at 950mA and 3000K down to 155 lumens at 2000K.

• Also launch an important new portfolio of LED modules dubbed INTERMO. This latest addition to Sharp’s range of LED products includes two easy-to-integrate module packages. The latest additions come in two module sizes, standard and slim. 50mm in diameter and 6mm high, the Standard INTERMO is a Zhaga Book 3 form-factor module, which ensures compatibility with a large eco-system of third-party products. The somewhat smaller Slim module, which is 44mm in diameter and 3.6mm high, has a nicely compact form factor, which is ideal for luminaire designs where space is at a premium.


• One of its founders, Dr. Shuji Nakamura, is awarded the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics along with Professors Isamu Akasaki and Hiroshi Amano. Recognising that Nakamura’s invention, the blue light emitting diode, represents a critical advancement in LED lighting, the Nobel committee explained that the innovation “has enabled bright and energy-saving white light sources.”

The Institute also noted that when the professors “produced bright blue light beams from their semi-conductors in the early 1990s, they triggered a fundamental transformation of lighting technology.”
In the citation the Institute concludes that, “incandescent light bulbs lit the 20th century; the 21st century will be lit by LED lamps.”

• Achieve another fundamental breakthrough in lighting-class LED performance with the ground-breaking SC5 Technology Platform, which powers the next generation of lighting with the introduction of Extreme High Power (XHP) LEDs. This new class of LEDs can reduce system costs by up to 40 percent in most lighting applications.

The SC5 Technology Platform is built on Cree’s industry-best silicon carbide technology and features significant advancements in epitaxial structure, chip architecture and an advanced light conversion system optimized for best thermal and optical performance. With these advancements, the SC5 Technology Platform achieves unparalleled lumen density and longer lifetime at higher operating temperatures than previous LED technology, which can significantly reduce thermal, mechanical and optical costs at the system level.

The first available family of XHP LEDs is the XLamp XHP50 LED, delivering up to 2250 lumens at 19 watts from a 5mm x 5mm package. At its maximum current, the XHP50 provides twice the light output of the industry’s brightest single-die LED, the XLamp XM-L2 LED, at a similar lumens per watt and without increasing the package footprint. By leveraging Cree’s latest reliability innovations, the XHP50 is designed to maintain L90 lifetimes above 50,000 hours even at high temperature and current.

• Upgrade their Beacon family by introducing the impressive Beacon XL, a spotlight with the power to provide up to 3000 fixture lumens at only 40W. Available in black and white versions to complement the rest of the Beacon range, the Beacon XL can replace existing 35W CMI-T (HID) luminaires to provide significant energy savings. With a CRI figure of up to 97 the Beacon XL offers retail and display environments a high-powered LED luminaire with great colour rendering.


• Launch a professional range of class-leading PAR16 LED retrofit lamps with a GU10 base delivering up to 660 lumen output – almost twice as bright as a standard 50W halogen spot lamp. Using technology developed by Verbatim’s parent company Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (MCC), the lamps achieve increased heat dissipation through advanced thermal cooling using a sophisticated heatsink design.

Verbatim’s GU10 LED range uses single focus diamond cut optics that allow light to be dispersed in a defined manner, avoiding glare and hotspots associated with many competing products. With a 35° beam angle, the lamps focus light where it’s needed with minimal spill. The PAR16’s compact body (50mm diameter, 56mm height) ensures easy fitting and alignment into fixtures.

A family of four 6W and four 8.5W PAR16 GU10 spotlights offer various lumen and colour temperature options, all at very high efficacy levels. Delivering between 400lm and 660lm of brightness, the LED lamps produce a luminous intensity from 1000cd to 1340cd at colour temperatures ranging from 2700K to 4000K. While the majority of the lamps offer dimming control at an attractive price, a couple of of the lamps are competitively priced alternatives for professional applications where a non-dimmable option is better suited without sacrificing reliability and long lifetime.


• Develop Green LEDs with an extremely high efficacy and a reduced drop in efficacy. The breakthrough greatly diminishes what is known as the ‘green gap’ phenomenon – the significant drop in efficacy in the green spectral range. The result is a green-emitting LED based on a chip size of 1sqmm and a driving current of 350mA using indium gallium nitride (InGaN) semiconductors which achieves a record efficacy of 147 lm/W at a wavelength of 530 nanometers (nm) and a spectral width of 35nm. The LED has a forward voltage of 2.93V at 350mA and shows significantly improved performance at higher current densities by achieving 338 lumens at 125A/cm2 current density. In addition, another green LED developed by combining a blue chip with a phosphor converter has achieved a record-breaking efficacy exceeding 200 lm/W.
Having a high efficient Green LED enables improved colour rendering and efficiency for colour tuneable LED fixtures moving forward.

• Launch the new Osram Soleriq P 13 that achieves a brightness level of up to 6800 lumens, making it the most powerful LED in its series. Together with its small light-emitting surface measuring just 13.5mm in diameter, the P 13 offers a highly compact and powerful light source for multiple indoor lighting applications. The P 13 is available in two versions with different colour rendering indexes (CRI): The CRI 80 LED delivers a brightness of 4000 lm even at high temperatures (85C, 1050mA) and can be overdriven to deliver up to 6800 lm. This high brightness is achieved with a small light-emitting surface (LES) only 13.5mm in diameter. The whole package measures 18mm x 18mm x 1.5mm.


• Announce a co-marketing agreement with Osram Opto Semiconductors to promote Corning Fibrance Light-Diffusing Fibre, a first-of-its-kind technology that embeds lighting into products. Fibrance fibre uses Corning’s glass optical fibre designed for thin, colourful, aesthetic lighting and Osram’s blue and green laser diodes to create endless design possibilities. Fibrance fibre is optimised for a variety of applications such as automotive interior, architecture, consumer electronics, major appliances and many more.

The flexibility and tight-bend capability of the fibre allows it to curve, wrap, or contour around objects – while maintaining bright and uniform light. The fibre is so small and thin it is nearly invisible when the light source is off, thereby enhancing a product’s overall aesthetics and user experience. Fibrance fibres disperse light, rather than transferring it, allowing it to emit vibrant, clear colours up to 50 metres in product length.

What’s next for 2015?
some predictions...

Paul Scheidt, Product Marketing Manager, Cree, LED Components:
Next year will see increasing demand for solutions that produce higher light output, higher optical density and better heat dissipation with fewer LED placements resulting in system cost reductions that can inspire new designs at attractive prices. One of the biggest innovations in LED is light conversion – getting more light out of an LED at higher operating temperatures. With high-power LEDs, manufacturers are no longer forced to use lower reliability mid-power LEDs to achieve the lowest system cost, while operating at higher temperatures, enabling up to a 60 percent reduction in heat sink costs. Also, because high-power LEDs on average use 80 percent fewer LEDs, enabling a smaller board size, beam angle and optic, lighting designers can more quickly create simpler, easier-to-design and aesthetically appealing LED systems.

Dr. Decai Sun, Chairman and CEO, Luminus:

Industry consolidation, more competition and capex investment in additional capacity of LED chip manufacturing. Furthermore, cost reduction of LED packaging will drive cost down of LED components at accelerated pace, which will increase adoption and penetration of LED lamps in commercial and residential markets;
More innovative smart lighting products with sensing, control and communication functions will appear in commercial and residential lighting.

Dr Lewis Lerman, Top Quark, QuarkStar Photonics:
LEDs continue to increase in source luminance while their physical dimensions shrink. Their efficacy and costs advance ahead of projections, leading to the barrier of entry into SSL solutions falling faster than anticipated. Now, everyone and anyone can seemingly play by the simple expedient of physically substituting LED light engines into containers designed for the ionized gas and tungsten filament lighting engines of the past. However, this “fast and furious” rush to market has resulted in a flood of unrefined and undifferentiated products that is now finding difficulty in penetrating markets past the early-adopters.
One reason is that, by simply substituting LED light engines for incumbent ones, there is little change in the overall luminaire’s physical dimension (and hence, manufacturing and carbon footprints remain the same as well). Thus, while the initial cost of solid-state lighting has been declining, it continues to be much too high for enthusiastic widespread adoption.

2015 will herald two major events in the landscape for lighting and lighting products: initial cost equivalency for SSL and the emergence of the next level of differentiation.

Combining extraordinarily clever optics and the control of lights in space with conventional time-based electronic controls will enable all the ‘essential qualities’ desired by users, and these new forms of lighting systems will emerge as the new differentiators in our illuminated environment. With the introduction of its first technology to the marketplace, QuarkStar’s pioneering team of scientists and engineers, looks forward to 2015 as the beginning of their own catalytic contributions to this exciting change.

Menko de Roos, CEO, Xicato:
2015 will see the continued march of LED technology toward full acceptance and broad implementation. Lighting fixture OEMs appear to have reached the point where they sell more LED fixtures than incumbent technologies, and this trend continues to grow.

In 2014 there was significant increased discussion of smart lighting, building integration and controls – Xicato contributed significantly to this discussion. It seems clear that both market demand and legislative activity will continue to focus on getting the high-value controls functions right, and that means dimming and dimming control as no other single function adds as much to increasing the efficiency of lighting throughout the installed base. I expect that in 2015, dimming, control and connectivity will dominate the discussion and I look for four things to happen:
1. The lighting design community will drive the industry toward a set of standards for acceptable dimming
2. System costs for quality dimming will decrease
3. Research on flicker and how to address it in LED solutions will increase
4. Wireless connectivity between lighting fixtures themselves and to users will become more common, bringing additional value via interaction and data.
The first white LED was presented in 1995, a mere 20 years ago. In 2015 we will recognise the full acceptance of LED technology as a primary light source. We can no longer call LED the light source of the future or new technology. It’s now firmly a member of the conventional lighting portfolio.

2014 has demonstrated rapid cost down in all parts of the supply chain for LED lighting whether they are LED emitters, light engines, LED drivers or complete fixtures. Such rapid cost downs will continue in 2015 resulting in rapid consolidation of established companies and a higher degree of business failures for those companies that cannot differentiate from competitors or their own technologies.

The larger players will decide how to react to market dynamics and, as we have seen with companies such as Philips, major changes could be announced in 2015 with more mergers and acquisitions.

The rate of technology improvements will begin to slow from 2015 to 2018 as higher lumens per watt figures will become less desirable compared to quality of light and cost metrics.

So how did my predictions for 2014 pan out?
•    The commercial availability of 200 lm/W LED emitters will be available by the end of 2014. Achieved
•    Low cost tuneable white LED fixtures will become widely available that offer end users the ability to set colour temperatures dynamically with a price difference of less than 25% more than static white equivalents. Partly Achieved but close to 40% more than static white
•    The rise of DC Grid and centralised LED driver solutions will begin to be seen due to increased reliability, ease of installation and lower overall system costs. Achieved with products like Xicato’s XIM modules
•    The rise of Ethernet connected LED fixtures and the use of mobile applications will become common place for end-users. Thus, 2014 will see the start of the combined LED fixture and control system to help introduce smart lighting to commercial lighting. Not achieved
•    Wireless connectivity will become popular in certain applications however reliability and security aspects will mean end-users patients will be tested. Partly Achieved but nowhere near adopted as expected.

My predictions for 2015:

• Ethernet based products will become common place through the use of WI-FI and wired Ethernet driver solutions.
• Security of smart lighting systems will become a high agenda item as more systems become compromised by bad actors.
• At least two major lighting companies will change hands in the range of > £250m turnover.
• Healthy lighting technologies such as colour tuneable and flicker free LED drivers will become a higher priority for users and specifiers.
• The major lighting companies will sell more LED products than traditional products for the first time.

Geoff Archenhold is an active investor in LED driver and fixture manufacturers and a lighting energy consultant.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of mondo*arc.


Dr Geoff Archenhold
Related Articles


Follow us on…

Follow Mondo Arc Magazine on Twitter Follow Mondo Arc Magazine on Facebook Follow Mondo Arc Magazine on Linked In

mondo arc india

darc awards DWLF IALD PLDC LRO