LEDs Magazine News & Insights 17 January 2020 - Editor's Column

Jan. 17, 2020

Welcome to the LEDs Magazine News & Insights newsletter for Jan. 17, 2020. Well, 2020 is sure underway. It should not be a surprise. I have been through this before. But the holidays always create an illusion of a slower pace, that the mind is quickly and easily entrained to adapt as normal.

I was returned to reality coincident with the arrival of an acute upper respiratory infection during a week where we had to finalize an issue for deployment and print yes, we still do print come copies. Now it’s early Friday, I should have written this yesterday, it’s raining in SoCal, and I must spend my weekend recovering from this malaise that has challenged me. But I shouldn’t complain. I have it good. I don’t have to write about world politics or the like. And I truly sense some optimism in our LED and solid-state lighting (SSL) sectors starting the year.

It appears the leaders at NEMA and the ALA had a moment of clarity, and ended their legal challenge against the state of California over lamp efficacy regulation. As I was writing a column for our upcoming issue, I realized I have taken positions that could appear contradictory of efficacy policy. I have certainly been in favor of policy that toughens efficacy requirements for lamps.

Yet I’ve also advocated for the freedom to sacrifice a small amount of efficacy in favor of quality of light, especially in luminaires. I don’t see that stance as unreasonable and it’s different from the Trump policy of no efficacy standards and buy what you want. But I do see that it makes it far harder to adopt universal efficacy policy. It’s easy to imagine a simple waiver that allows a project some leeway of energy usage vs. quality. Can you imagine the California Energy Commission (CEC) actually implementing that?

This second full week of the New Year has slowed a bit in terms of industry activity. Osram has stayed busy on the LED front with new components for automotive and horticultural applications. The company also had a great line in the automotive press release saying that “light is the new chrome” for cars. Indeed, that is such an important message and it can be applied in many other scenarios. Lighting is what increasingly makes the food look better, the merchandise more alluring, the jewelry more sparkling, and more.

We didn’t have a lot more in terms of news breaking after our Wednesday newsletter this week. We do have another Li-Fi story that goes back to CES last week and yet another approach to using light for communications.

Today is absolutely the last day to grab an Early Bird discount when registering for Strategies in Light. That week will afford you numerous opportunities to learn more about quality of light, the technology behind the SSL revolution, and the inspiration of design and specification.

And again I will tout the value and fun that awaits attendees to our Sapphire Awards in 2020. Most of you that come to San Diego will probably not find much time for touristy-type activity. But here’s a chance to visit a top San Diego attraction and a museum ranked in the top ten in the US, while also getting a chance to celebrate the Sapphire winners.

For $50 you can visit the historic aircraft carrier Midway. In addition to drinks and tapas, our guests will get to explore the museum and interactive attractions. And we’d love to have as many as possible join us to cheer on the Sapphire winners on the flight deck.

You will find many more stories of interest in the body of today’s newsletter. Please note my relatively new email address below. And always feel free to contact me to discuss content we post or to pitch a contributed article.

- Maury Wright, (858) 748-6785, [email protected]