GE's 27-watt LED replacement for 100-watt incandescent bulbs set to light up our lives next year

As if you didn't already have enough reason to be pumped for this week's Lightfair trade show in Vegas -- GE is talking up its new 27-watt Energy Smart LED bulb that can product enough power (1,600-plus lumens) to replace a standard 100-watt incandescent bulb. The bulb, which joins 13-watt and 9-watt LED bulbs (replacements for 60- and 40-watt incandescents, respectively) offers up 25,000 hours of life, which should give you roughly 22.8 years, assuming you use it about three hours a day. It'll be hitting the U.S. and Canada in the first half of next year for an undetermined price. Check the illuminating press release after the break.

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GE Plans World Debut of LED Bulb that Replaces 100-watt Incandescent

GE Lighting (NYSE: GE) this week will illuminate a light-emitting diode replacement for the 100-watt incandescent light bulb - developed in its East Cleveland, Ohio LED lab - that packages 27-watts of input power in a standard "A-19" bulb shape. The GE Energy Smart® 27-watt LED bulb incorporates proprietary synthetic jet technology that was enabled by GE's collaboration with ecomaginationSM Challenge winner Nuventix, creator of LED cooling technologies for energy-efficient lighting.

"Our innovation team has tackled a previously insurmountable technical challenge: cooling a 100-watt A-19 shaped replacement LED bulb without making it physically bigger"

GE's 27-watt Energy Smart® LED bulb, on store shelves in the U.S. and Canada the first half of 2013 (MSRP to be determined), will debut on a global stage starting May 9 at LIGHTFAIR International in Las Vegas, the world's largest lighting trade show. GE's existing portfolio of LED bulbs includes a 13-watt LED (60-watt incandescent replacement) and a 9-watt LED (40-watt incandescent replacement), which was the first incandescent-shaped (A-19) LED in the world to earn ENERGY STAR® qualification.

"Our innovation team has tackled a previously insurmountable technical challenge: cooling a 100-watt A-19 shaped replacement LED bulb without making it physically bigger," says Steve Briggs, general manager of LED systems, GE Lighting. "Each subsystem such as optics, electronics and thermals needed to be designed for miniaturization and cooperative performance. We explored the limits of what's possible and pushed far beyond industry expectations and competitors' thinking and product offerings."

New LED bulb performance metrics

GE testing confirms 100-watt incandescent replacement metrics: 1,600+ lumens, uniform omnidirectional light distribution, 3000K color temperature, 25,000-hour life rating (22.8 years at 3 hours per day), dimmable, no mercury, instant full brightness and 60+ lumens per watt - all fitting neatly in the standard A-19 bulb shape.

"Our achievement does more than backfill for the 100-watt incandescent bulb," adds Briggs. "We now have a clear path to attaining even higher light levels, which will give customers more energy-efficient lighting options in both commercial and residential settings. This product fills a real customer need and further extends GE's LED lighting leadership."

LEDs are semi-conductors that produce light. They must be cooled to ensure long life. In collaboration with GE, Nuventix developed a method for moving air to cool LEDs using an oscillating membrane, called a synthetic jet (an alternative to a fan), which fits within the envelope of the A-19 bulb shape.

"We expected our collaboration with GE Lighting would power some big advances in the application of lighting," notes Jim Balthazar, CEO and president of Nuventix. "Once we came together last year, our teams wasted no time getting in the lab to build on the genius of GE's LED bulb design, and to incorporate a synthetic jet solution that enabled GE to leapfrog its competitors. We're a leader helping a leader, and it's going to benefit consumers that want high quality LED lighting that performs as promised."

Incandescent replacements need to perform as expected

Every GE Energy Smart® LED incandescent replacement bulb, including the coming 100-watt replacement, offers smooth, incandescent-like dimming, minus the stepped dimming, flicker, shimmer, pop-on, drop-off or even inaction that plague other LED bulbs touting a dimming capability. GE's LED bulbs also feature an aesthetically pleasing incandescent size and shape, and a design that allows for a soft-white appearance when turned off, a consumer preference that GE discovered through market research.

The 100-watt replacement LED will expand GE's current family of LED bulbs already offered in a broad range of shapes, wattages and colors, including its 40- and 60-watt LED standard incandescent bulb replacements, spot and flood lights (PAR20 & PAR30), ceiling fan bulbs (A15), medium globes (G25), small globes (G16.5), candles (CA10) and night lights (C7). All of GE's Energy Smart LED bulbs are rigorously tested to ensure constant color, long life and verifiable lumen ratings.