View This Issue - December 2009

STRATEGICALLY SPEAKING: For Replacement Lamps, LEDs are Different

Insights Into LEDs & Lighting, from Strategies Unlimited

For Replacement Lamps, LEDs are Different


Many energy efficiency programs have been promoting compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) to reduce energy use. Rebates and discounts by major retail outlets have dramatically increased shipments of CFLs in the US — from 5% of the total lamps bought in 2004 to 23% in 2007. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that Energy Star CFL sales for 2007 were nearly double those in 2006.

However, gains in efficient lighting have been fragile in the US. Sales of CFLs have dropped in the current recession to 21% of total US consumer light-bulb sales in 2008 from 23% in 2007, according to the US Department of Energy (See Figure 1). The steep decline in CFL shipments, even in regions that had invested in CFL promotions such as Vermont and Massachusetts, is a cause of concern to all who aspire to promote energy efficient lighting.

Figure 1

U.S. Lamp Shipments and CFL Market Share

Source: US Department of Energy, analysis by D&R international; CFL Shipments – US Department of Commerce; Incandescent Shipments – D&R, based on Navigant Lighting Study, RECS, DOC.

There are many possible reasons for this decline in the market share of CFLs. New users have not been added to the market as disposable incomes have declined and customers are sensitive to higher prices Early adopters bought the long-lasting CFLs and the rest of the market has not followed suit Color quality issues of CFL persist and cannot be overcome with incentives Fear of mercury in CFLs has not been adequately addressed.

In order to promote energy savings, CFLs are heavily discounted or are being given away, and incandescent bulbs are scheduled to be banned in the U.S beginning in 2012 (they are already banned in Europe). In spite of heavy investment in promoting CFLs, incandescent technology has proved difficult to unseat, especially in the residential segment.

There is no publicly available data on the number of CFLs that are recycled, but in a report on CFL recycling programs around the world published in July 2009 by the Northeast Waste Management Officials’ Association (NEWMOA), CFL recycling rates vary from 87% in Taiwan (which includes all fluorescent) to 3% in 2004 in Canada. Only 2% of CFLs were recycled by German households in 2008. There is increasing evidence that efficient recycling of CFLs is going to require heavy investments in new infrastructure and public education.

Although CFLs were introduced in 1980s, they became a part of energy policy only in this century. If it had been left to the markets, CFLs would likely have made only a small dent in the market by now.

Today CFLs are the technology most closely associated with energy- efficient lighting, but LED lighting has started gaining mind share, at least in energy efficiency circles. The economic downturn has dampened the rate of the transition to efficient lighting technology. However, issues relating to global warming, energy security and environmental degradation are now a part of the public psyche. Although not many people have invested in efficient lighting, the awareness about efficient lighting options has increased. The LED lighting industry has continued to grow in spite of the economic downturn.

Since 2008, the price of HB LEDs has declined 10% to 25%. More LED manufacturing capacity has been created. The quality of white LEDs in terms of lumen output and CRI has improved. Warm white LED luminaires are comparable in terms of quality of light with incandescent lamps, but without their inefficiencies. However, the volumes have not yet reached critical levels at which the costs can be as competitive with CFLs.

There have been attempts around the world to design “demand pull” and “supply push” strategies for CFLs. The rate of penetration is directly proportional to the investments made in promoting CFLs. The outright ban on incandescents with distribution of free CFLs in Cuba has paid off. Similar strategies can be directed to LED applications that are ready to be pushed into the marketplace with no fear of releasing mercury. Moreover, LEDs can be used with controls that can offer further energy savings that are not possible using available CFL technology.

China has made developing LED technology one of its national priorities. It has embarked on the 21-city program, which will showcase LED applications, and it is expanding LED manufacturing clusters to seven regions. The grand experiment with LED streetlight installations is going through iterations, improving these products in the process.

Just three years ago LEDs were too dim for street lighting; in 2009 Los Angeles is installing 7,000 streetlights, with tens of thousands more planned for following years. There is an expectation that the problems relating to toxic material content, quality of light, and reliability of performance, like those encountered by CFL products, can be avoided by LED technology. There are agencies and organizations working to prevent those problems in spite of market pressures to flood the market with substandard products. This time it can be different.


Zierick Manufacturing Corp

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Cree Inc

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InnoLight sp zoo

EU located lighting manufacturer for LED GU10 5W 600lm CRI>80 reflector, great performance, and LED E27 5W 380lm classic traditional appearance.

CSA Group

A global solutions provider of product testing and certification services for electrical, mechanical, plumbing, gas, medical and a variety of other products.

Energy Efficient Lighting

Energy Efficient Lighting offers total solutions to both conventional and more advanced LED lighting fixtures and LED retrofit kits for commercial and industrial applications.


48 companies worldwide, passionate about light and innovation, experts in developing LED lighting solutions for safe and comfortable environments with significant energy and cost savings,...

Guardian Industries

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ELMA Electronic Inc

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LEDSAmerica Inc

LedsAmerica is a full line LED line company and has manufacturing in Iowa where T8 LED-O tubes and street lights are made together with PL, PARs, High Bay lights. MAx

Lumentra Inc

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The LED, DC-DC and AC-DC power supplies from 1W - 1600W. Cincon’s lighting controllers, interfaces and devices incorporating DALI protocol. LED drivers from 25W - 150W with international ...


LTF, LLC is a U.S based solid-state lighting product development and manufacturing company with facilities located in both USA and China.

Marian Inc

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Colorimetry Research

Specializes in the field of optics, manufacturing, electronics and software enables us engineer products with the right balance of hardware and software.

eldoLED America Inc

Designs and manufactures drive solutions for LED based lighting systems. Our technologies empower our customers to deliver the promise of LED lighting.

Cirrus Logic Inc

Cirrus Logic develops high-precision, analog and mixed-signal integrated circuits for a broad range of innovative customers across a variety of energy-related applications, including the ...


Established in 2002 as an ecommerce store for all your LED product needs.


Designer and manufacturer of custom and industry standard LED, DC-DC and AC-DC power supplies from 1W to 1600W. Cincon also designs and manufacturers lighting controllers, interfaces...

Illumination Machines

Illumination Machines designs custom optics, heat sinks, and remote phosphor systems for LED luminaires and lamps.

eldoLED BV

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Cree CXA LED Array Family

Cree’s CXA LED Arrays are optimized to simplify design and lower system cost, delivering high lumen output and efficacy with a family of single, easy-to-use arrays.

Cree LED Modules

Cree LED modules deliver beautiful, consistent light, backed by a 5-year warranty. They offer a choice of dimming options, while reducing the lighting power load by 80%.

Cree XLamp® XP-L LEDs-the industry’s highest efficacy single-die LED.

Cree® XP-L LED is the first commercially available single-die LED to achieve up to 200LPW at 350mA. The XP-L enables 50% or more performance increase as a drop-in upgrade.

Surface Mount Wire Gripper - Part Number 1301

The Zierick 1301 is designed to allow customers to easier terminate a stripped wire to a PCB. Wire sizes to 24 AWG. Terminal is UL Recognized.

Surface Mount Wire Gripper - Part Number 1262

The Zierick 1262 is designed to allow customers to easier terminate a stripped wire to a PCB. Wire sizes from 0.025" to 0.095". Terminal is UL Recognized.

Unlock new LED lighting solutions with Cree High Density LEDs

Cree® High Density LEDs deliver the industry’s highest optical control factor enabling lighting manufacturers to improve performance, cost and size of LED lighting—enabling never before p...

Cree XLamp® XM-L2 EasyWhite® LED

The first 5mmx5mm LED to enable color-consistent 50W halogen performance; the XM-L2 EasyWhite delivers 1,100 lumens and is optimized to replace halogen technology.

Surface Mount Insulation Piercing Terminals

Surface Mount Wire-to-Board terminals available for wire gauges ranging from 24 to 14 AWG. Parts can be terminated to allow daisy-chain applications. Eliminates difficulty with direct...

LED flexible strip and aluminum LED bar

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P3 Indoor Full Color LED Display Video screen

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LED Panel Light

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Rotatable LED Down Light, beam angle adjustable 10-60°

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Solar LED Paver Light

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T8 LED tube light

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Super bright Injection LED modules

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Flexible LED screen - Rental and Stage LED billboard

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iVAR COB LED Downlight

iVAR COB LED Downlight use die-casting magnesium alloy to make the main body,has Excellent heat dissipation performance,and Unique and delicate looking design.

LIMS - Liquid Injection Molding System

Silicone LIMS can be used to injection mold silicone components such as lenses or gaskets in an automated process. The two-component, thermoset material ranges in Shore A hardness from 5-80.

360 degree 10W led bulb

360 degree 10W led bulb has high efficiency, high power factor,environmental friendly, unique heat-dissipating design and perfect thermal management.







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