PhotonStar LED announces supply agreement with UK home builder

Sept. 24, 2012
A leading UK home builder will install LED lights from PhotonStar in its new properties, as a cost-effective way to meet carbon-emission targets.
UK-based LED lighting specialist PhotonStar LED Group plc (AIM: PSL) has announced a rolling, one-year, exclusive supply agreement with a major UK house builder.

PhotonStar will supply LED lighting fixtures for all of the developer’s new homes. The products will be supplied through UK wholesalers.

In the last year, the house builder (which was not named) completed 1500 homes, and is forecasting continued growth. The financial terms of the contract were not disclosed. On the day the deal was announced, PhotonStar’s stock price on the AIM market increased by around 15% from 8.5 pence to 9.75 pence.

All new properties will be subject to new legislation requiring improvement in energy efficiency including lighting. The new legislation – Code for Sustainable Homes – is an environmental impact rating system for housing in England and Wales.

The first level (3) of the Code has recently become mandatory on all new properties, with increasing targets for CO2 emission reduction over the next four years. House builders have a number of choices on how they will achieve these reductions.

Following extensive testing over a one-year trial, PhotonStar was able to successfully demonstrate cost-effective (on a cost per plot basis) CO2 emission reduction in multiple property types through a lighting upgrade.

PhotonStar’s LED products were apparently selected on the basis of their initial cost, rather than by considering operational costs over several years. Normally, LED fixtures are more expensive on an initial-cost basis, but become viable when total cost of ownership – including energy consumption and maintenance costs – is evaluated.

James Mckenzie, CEO of PhotonStar LED Group PLC, commented, “We are delighted that [our LED fixtures] have now received the endorsement of a major UK house builder. It also serves as a credible introduction into new wholesale stockists.”

Tunable LED lighting

At last week’s Strategies in Light Europe 2012 conference in Munich, Germany, PhotonStar’s Fenella Frost discussed color quality and color tunability. One of her key points was that the human body’s natural sleep/wake cycle (the circadian rhythm) is mainly influenced by the amount of blue light (at around 460 nm) in the spectrum, rather than the color temperature of the light.

Because of this, while blue-rich LED light can promote wakefulness in the morning, it can also disrupt the onset of sleep in the evening. The same effect is caused by the blue-light content in the backlights of LCD screens when devices such as laptops and tablets are used in late evening.

The answer, said Frost, is to use a dynamic and tunable LED system in which a pleasant color temperature and dimming level can be achieved without having a high level of blue light in the spectrum. Luckily, PhotonStar believes that its ChromaWhite can meet these requirements. For more information, look out for the Strategies in Light Europe 2012 conference write-up in the Nov/Dec issue of LEDs Magazine.