Phosphor specialist Intematix has added to its remote-phosphor optics family for LED-based retrofit lamps, delivering a new model that can enable 150W-equivalent products. The new ChromaLit Contour product enables lamps with output to 2200 lm with power consumption of 30W.
"We are already seeing newly available, 2200-plus-lm LED lightbulbs worldwide using this technology," said Julian Carey, senior director of strategic marketing at Intematix. Feit, for example, has been the most prominent supplier of retrofit lamps using the Contour family in the US, having offered solid-state lighting (SSL) alternatives to 40W, 60W, 75W, and 100W incandescent bulbs. Now Feit is selling a 150W equivalent model through Lowe's retailers in the US, with the lamps also offering three-way switching for operation at stepped light levels.
Intematix continues to believe that remote-phosphor SSL technology, where the phosphor is located on a secondary optic rather than on the blue LEDs, enables higher-efficacy products relative to phosphor-converted LEDs. Carey added, "By applying this remote phosphor technology to the high end of the lightbulb output range, we show 38% higher lumen output than bulbs available today."
Sometimes, however, the efficacy gain can come at a cost as Cree argued in a feature article comparing the phosphor options last year. Intematix took issue with that article and responded with a column addressing the cost of remote phosphor.
Remote phosphor also has the potential to minimize color shift in LED-based lighting products, because the phosphor is located away from the LED junction and the heat radiated from that junction. With on-chip phosphors, conversely, the nearby heat source can lead to color shift, although LED manufacturers are certainly delivering products with excellent color maintenance today.
Ultimately, the bigger challenge for Intematix may be the yellow-orange look of the lamp optic in the off state. Philips Lighting, for example, has largely moved away from remote-phosphor designs despite building heralded products with the technique, including the L Prize winning lamp. Clearly some consumers are more comfortable with a traditional looking lamp.
Back at The LED Show in Las Vegas last August, Carey presented a new approach to remote phosphor that enabled optics with a more traditional white look in the off state — the result being a slight tradeoff in efficacy. But that technology has yet to come to retrofit lamps.
The Contour family does enable omnidirectional lamps with a 325° beam pattern, and the capability of meeting Energy Star requirements. Intematix offers the donut-shaped optic in a choice of 2700K, 3000K, and 5000K CCTs. The design of a 150W-equivalent lamp is captured in an A21 form factor in which the lamp is 125 mm in length. Indeed, 100W-equivalent lamps based on Contour also use the A21 size, although a few manufacturers have announced LED lamps in the A19, 114-mm size more common to 100W incandescent bulbs.