Zhaga approves Books 14 and 16 for LED light engines, appoints test labs

Jan. 13, 2017
Books for linear and circular LED light engines can now be used by Zhaga members in SSL luminaire designs, while Zhaga has formally approved test labs for Book 14 linear products.

Books for linear and circular LED light engines can now be used by Zhaga members in SSL luminaire designs, while Zhaga has formally approved test labs for Book 14 linear products.

The Zhaga Consortium has announced that two new books defining LED light engines (LLEs) have been approved for use by consortium members in solid-state lighting (SSL) luminaires. The new Book 14 defines flat rectangular LLEs for linear fixtures while Book 16 defines flat circular LEDs for round ceiling fixtures. Meanwhile, the consortium also announced that test labs Dekra, Intertek, and VDE have been approved to test Book 14 LLE designs to ensure interoperability with luminaires designed to the specification and interchangeability between LLEs from different vendors.

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Zhaga is an SSL industry organization chartered with developing standards for LLEs and associated technologies that can help luminaire makers simplify their supply chain and reduce production costs through a modular approach to luminaire design. The organization has developed more than ten specifications that are promulgated in what the consortium calls Books, supporting a wide variety of different indoor and outdoor applications. Moreover, the Books define LLEs both with and without integrated driver electronics or what the consortium calls electronic control gear, and also both socketable LLEs or those that require tools for attachment.

Linear luminaires

The Book 14 specification for linear products includes options for three different categories or lengths of LLEs — 565, 1166, and 1466 mm. The concept for Book 14 luminaires is not dissimilar to the ubiquitous fluorescent linear troffer. The specification defines a socketable design that means the LLE can be installed or removed from the luminaire without a tool. The Book 14 LLEs will not be circular like fluorescent tubes but will nonetheless install much like tubes.

Book 14 also specifies that the LLE have an integrated driver. That element is different from a fluorescent tube in that the luminaire typically houses the ballast in the traditional troffer example. Book 14 does not define characteristics such as optical beam pattern, but LLE manufacturers are required to disclose such characteristics in detail.

Circular luminaires

The Book 16 specification is very similar in generic characteristics to Book 14. Again, the LLE is required to have an integrated driver, meaning that the LLE is connected directly to AC or mains power. The specification is intended for use in low-profile, low-glare circular luminaires in what Zhaga terms "low-luminance" applications.

The Zhaga Book 16 specification defines flat circular LED light engines for round ceiling fixtures.

There are a greater number of categories in Book 16 relative to Book 14, meaning more flexibility in luminaire size or in this case diameter. The choices include 130, 180, 250, 350, and 500 mm. The specification also strictly defines mounting holes. But Book 16 will require tools for installation or removal of the LLE unlike in Book 14.

Spec availability and test

For now, the new Books are only available for download and use by Zhaga members. But the organization typically transitions the Books into the open domain with maturity and once Zhaga members announce products and the initial interoperability testing is complete. It was back in 2012 that Zhaga first made a Book publicly accessible.

Clearly the testing of Book 14 products will ensue shortly with appointments of the test labs. The test labs provide third-party validation that products meet all electrical, thermal, optical, and mechanical elements of a Book. Approved products go in the Zhaga Certified Products Database and are easily located on the organization's website.