LEDs Magazine News & Insights 16 Dec 2020 – Editor’s Column

Dec. 16, 2020

Welcome to the LEDs Magazine News & Insights newsletter for Dec. 16, 2020. There is without question some momentum building for the LED and solid-state lighting (SSL) sectors as we approach 2021. We are seeing an unexpected uptick in news at the end of this year, and hopefully the trend means good things for the New Year.

There are reasons for optimism. The COVID-19 vaccine is rolling out. The US political chaos is hopefully stabilizing. One way or the other, we will learn the end of the Brexit process soon. But I believe there is something else stirring our sectors. We have seen quite a lot of true technology advancements emerge and those developments push forward things like improved quality of light, more powerful and affordable ultraviolet (UV) LEDs, and maybe even answers to how connected lighting may finally fulfill promises. Here’s hoping.

Turning our attention to Europe, we were delighted this week to have a guest column from Ourania Georgoutsakou, the Secretary General of LightingEurope. Like many people, she has strong thoughts on germicidal UV-C-band energy that can deactivate pathogens such as the coronavirus. And she is arguing for European Union policies that will encourage the installation of UV-C lighting.

Approaching the end of 2020, we are looking back at content that resonated the most with you the reader throughout the year. We’ve already published top-read lists in most of our vertical newsletters. This week we get to our broader top 20 list for all of the content on the site. As you might expect, stories associated with the pandemic dominated the rankings. The top-read pieces were on business impact but technology stories also made the list.

I don’t remember when I first addressed the coronavirus in a newsletter column, but it was in early 2020. I do remember thinking at the time that at least as an editor in a technology field, I would not be focused on covering the virus constantly. I thought it perhaps a novel occasion to cover the novel coronavirus. I was not at all prepared for how thoroughly the pandemic would pervade our business sectors. Now I’m just waiting for the week that I don’t mention it and we don’t post a story with a tie to it.

Moving to some of that technology development that I mentioned earlier, Nichia made a very interesting announcement on the packaged LED front. There were two items covered in the press release. First, the company is already shipping the Tri-Gain-based LEDs under the license agreement with GE Current we covered a few weeks back. Second, Nichia has developed a new Phosphor Converted Cyan LED that has spectral energy focused in the 480-nm region where it maximally impacts the circadian system.

Of course, business skirmishes also continue as we happily head to the close of 2020. Former siblings Osram and LEDvance are battling over the iconic Sylvania brand. I don’t have any real insight into how long this dispute has been gestating. But I did find it interesting that the action by Osram came soon after ams gained full control of Osram.

You will find many more stories of interest in the body of today’s newsletter. 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]