Philips combines efficiency, brightness and warmth in LED lamp prototype

We know what you're thinking: "light bulbs? Yawwwwn." But we'll say this, Philips has done something pretty impressive and interesting with its TLED prototype lamp. Generally LED bulbs use either a combination red, green and blue LEDs to create white light, or they use a phosphor coating (more common) in combination with a blue LED. The problem with the latter is that it tends to generate a very cool light with a blue tinge, while the former is less energy efficient because of their reliance on green LEDs. Philips' solution is to combine two blue and one red element, but use a green phosphor filter to convert one of the blue LEDs to green. The result is a relatively warm light, between 3,000 and 4,000 kelvin, that generates more than twice as many lumens per-watt as Philips' current LED bulbs. In theory, a 7.5-watt TLED could generate as much light as a 100-watt incandescent bulb. With any luck the tech should hit the market sometime during 2015, but it'll be primarily for office and industrial application at first -- so don't start tossing your CFLs just yet.

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Philips creates the world's most energy-efficient warm white LED lamp
First LED lamp prototype delivering 200 lumen per watt high quality light, halving the energy use compared to current LED lamps

Eindhoven, the Netherlands – 11/04/13 Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) announces a new innovation in LED lighting, creating the world's most energy-efficient LED lamp suitable for general lighting applications. Philips researchers developed a tube lighting (TL) replacement TLED prototype that produces a record 200 lumens per watt of high-quality white light (compared with 100lm/W for fluorescent lighting and just 15lm/W for traditional light bulbs). This prototype TLED lamp is twice as efficient as predecessor lamps, basically halving the energy used.

With lighting accounting for more than 19% of the world's total electricity consumption, this innovation promises to drive massive energy and cost savings across the globe. The 200lm/W TLED lamp is expected to hit the market in 2015 for office and industry applications before ultimately being used in the home.

The new TLED prototype lamp from Philips marks the first time that lighting engineers have been able to reach 200lm/W efficiency without compromising on light quality[1], with all parameters required to meet the stringent requirements for office lighting. "This again is a major breakthrough in LED lighting and will further drive the transformation of the lighting industry," explains Rene van Schooten, CEO Light Sources & Electronics for Philips Lighting. "After being recognized for our quality of LED light (mimicking traditional light bulbs) to creating new experience with Philips Hue (the connected light system for the home), we now present the next innovative step in doubling lighting efficiency. It's exciting to imagine the massive energy and cost savings it will bring to our planet and customers."

Significant energy and cost savings
The TLED lamps are intended to replace fluorescent tube lighting used in office and industry, which currently account for more than half of the world's total lighting. Conversion to the twice-as-efficient 200lm/W TLED lamps will generate significant energy and cost savings.

In the US alone, for example, fluorescent lights consume around 200 terawatts of electricity annually. If these lights were all replaced with 200lm/W TLEDs, the US would use around 100 terawatts less energy (equivalent to 50 medium sized power plants) saving more than US$12 billion and preventing around 60 million metric tons of CO2 from being released into the atmosphere.[2]

This new LED innovation from Philips underlines the value and power of its lighting business, bringing together its expertise in LED technology, lamps, applications and systems. Market leading innovations from Philips Lumileds, as in phosphor technology and blue LEDs, together contribute to the high quality of light and advances in efficiency.

[1] Comfortable, workable light requires a color temperature of 3000–4000 kelvins, a color rendering index of at least 80, and an R9 saturated red level of no less than 20.

2 U.S. Department of Energy report January 2012: Energy savings potential of solid-state lighting in general illumination applications