Solar power drives LEDs for general illumination

Thanks to rapid improvements in photovoltaic and LED lighting technology, solar-powered LED lighting is now suitable for a range of illumination applications, according to Sean Bourquin and Anthony Tisot of Carmanah Technologies.

Nov 7th, 2008
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Against a climate of rising energy costs and escalating environmental concerns, today’s advanced LED technology is creating new opportunities in solar-powered area lighting. Thanks to a new generation of bright and efficient LEDs, solar-powered lighting is expanding from its role in signal lights and flashing beacons to offer a renewable energy alternative for general illumination applications.

Early applications of solar-powered LEDs
Among the earliest widespread applications of solar-powered LED technology, self-contained marine lanterns were introduced in the early 1990s as a costeffective replacement for higher maintenance, solar-powered, tungsten-incandescent marine lights. Designed and built by Canadian manufacturer Carmanah Technologies for the United States Coast Guard, the powerful all-in-one lanterns could be transported easily, installed in minutes, and left to operate reliably for years, maintenance free.

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This article was published in the November/December 2008 issue of LEDs Magazine.

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