Solar LED-lighting consortium releases introductory recommended practices

July 20, 2011
The Consortium for Solar Lighting that formed back in April has released an introductory recommended practices document for outdoor LED-based SSL applications.

The Consortium for Solar Lighting (CSL) has published its first recommended practices document entitled "Recommended Practices: Introduction."

As the name implies, the document introduces the elements of a solar-powered LED-based outdoor-lighting system and describes the key problem of sizing the system so that the solid-state lighting (SSL) operates reliably throughout the night every night.

Solar SSL system elements

For reliable operation, a solar-powered system must offer matched luminaire, solar-panel, and battery elements. As the new document describes, the energy output to the luminaire must be supported by the ability of the panel to capture the required energy and the batteries to store that energy for operation throughout a night.

At its inception in April, the CSL stated that it would not develop lighting standards in conflict with those promulgated by the CIE and IESNA that prescribe lighting levels for applications. Instead the CSL will focus on helping parties to use solar-powered SSL to comply with those lighting-level guidelines.

Realistically, this first document defines the problem more so than provides advice on solving the problem. The CSL has promised a more detailed guideline on sizing solar-LED systems that is due this fall.

The CSL was founded by Sharp Electronics, Carmanah Technologies, Inovus Solar, and SolarOne Solutions. The introductory document is the first of many Recommended Practices reports planned by the consortium.