LED Lighting Replacement For Conventional HPS/HID Lights

LED Street Light
Though far from an LED Grow Light and not fine tuned for the wavelengths required by plants, this could be a direct solid state lighting replacement for Indoor Gardeners that currently use HID or HPS bulbs.

After four years of extensive Research & Development, Remco Solid State Lighting Inc., a Toronto, Canada-based SSL Solutions Company, has broken through the barrier to replace conventional street lighting with its recently patented SSL technology and LED-based street light.

Its disruptive SSL technology utilizes the dynamic resistance of LEDs providing a LED light engine that is up to 98% power efficient – only a 2% power loss that enables optimal power and LED lighting efficiencies. IES certified photometric lab results and successful pilot field-testing conducted at Camp Borden military base have verified these industry-leading levels of performance.

A number of companies have ventured into the LED street lighting market with varying degrees of success. Now, Remco Solid State Lighting has delved into this market utilizing its recently patented power efficient light engine and prototyped an LED Street Light for a truly equivalent LED replacement of the conventional cobra head street light.

“Real LED-based lighting application replacements for existing light sources must be direct lighting replacement solutions - lumen for lumen and LUX for LUX, plus offer the benefits of energy savings and reduced maintenance cost," stated Ron Russell, Remco’s CTO and inventor of Remco’s patented LED light engine. Not only is it scaleable to all lighting applications but it also offers a significant competitive advantage in high power LED lighting applications.

Conventional street lights typically use a high-pressure sodium bulb. Even non-technical people can see the difference in the picture. The CTO also conveyed that, despite having retrofitted a cobra head street light fixture with Remco’s proprietary thermal management and LED light engine using a stock HPS cobra head lens, Remco’s LED Street Light was able to outperform and produce more light at a greater efficiency than the conventional high-pressure sodium street light.

Mark Matthews, Remco's President and CEO stated, “What we strive to achieve with our SSL technology and LED lighting applications is equivalent useable lumens utilizing LEDs to replace conventional lighting with significant energy savings. Our Light engine is up to 98% power efficient and this technology is the key, especially in high power lighting applications."

According to Alex Savu, Energy Manager at Camp Borden military base in Canada (where the LED street light pilot test was performed), conventional HPS street lights consume 138 watts (100 watt HPS bulb plus the ballast which consumes an additional 38 watts) and the Remco prototype (a light engine and LED fixture within a cobra head fixture) consumed only 111 watts to generate 4770 useable lumens – a direct lighting replacement.

Matthews explained that, “While the test confirms only a 20% energy savings at 40.1 lumens per watt, these results are excellent considering that we have incorporated our LED fixture within a cobra head fixture and lost 20% of the lumens output absorbed by the standard HPS cobra head lens; whereas, we could have generated approximately 5300 useable lumens without the HPS lens.”

“When we complete our commercial product to replace all models of 100 watt HPS street lights (Note: the ballast also consumes 38 watts) with our patented LED light engine, proprietary thermal management and optics, utilizing 100 lumens/watt white LEDs, the commercial Remco LED street light luminaire will achieve approximately a 50% energy savings at 72 watts.”

It is estimated that there are 50 million 100 watt conventional street lights in North America, and we would like to replace all conventional street lights worldwide with Remco’s energy efficient LED Street Light as a contribution to help reduce Global Warming.

Alex Savu reported that since performing the tests, he has seen the superior performance of Remco's LED Street Light. He said, "The light is phenomenal. Basically, it is superior. It looks good!" He explained, "We would have to change our current units ten times before changing one of their units. The way we operate our lights, their units will last 27.4 years." (10 hours per day, seven days per week.)

Savu added, "Once we put theirs up, there were no complaints whatsoever." “However,” he said, "most of the other street lights we tested received complaints; either they were not bright enough or there was something wrong with the light."

In addition to its power efficient light engine for street lights, the company has developed a fully integrated pendant linear SSL luminaire prototype to replace fluorescent lighting capable of 66% energy savings as well fabricating prototypes of Edison-based LED bulbs with brightness levels equivalent to the incandescent bulbs they replace at energy savings of 85% to 95%!

Remco’s new LED light engine technology and SSL luminaires are gaining attention. In 2008 the company was selected as one of Canada’s Top Ten Cleantech technology companies by the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation.

Remco is on the verge of setting new standards in the Solid State Lighting industry and is currently seeking capital and licensing to major global lighting/fixture organizations and/or international distributors to collectively take a commanding lead in high power LED lighting applications.

Photo cutline: Remco’s Bright LED Street Light is in the foreground and conventional HPS street lights in the background.

GaN Stacked Carbon Film LED Grow Light

GaN on Carbon LED
Leave it to the Empire of the Sun to conquer Solid State Lighting, if this ever makes it into the LED Grow Light market the rays of the rising sun will be upon us all.

A joint research group announced that they developed a new technique to form gallium nitride (GaN) based LED on a flexible substrate.

The group was led by Hiroshi Fujioka a professor at Institute of Industrial Science at the University of Tokyo and the Kanagawa Academy of Science and Technology (KAST). The technique employs a kind of physical vapor deposition (PVD) process, which is suitable for the production of large size LEDs in large quantities.

"With this technique, it is highly possible to form, for example, a 1m square GaN LED that emits light from the entire surface at a low cost," Fujioka said.

The group has only confirmed emission by "photoexcitation" with the irradiation of UV light on a 2cm square so far, but it is planning to conduct the experiment of emission by electrical excitation, as in the ordinary LEDs, in a few months.

Fujioka and others used an "organic polymer sintered graphite sheet (PGS)" for the substrate, instead of a sapphire substrate, which is commonly used in GaN LEDs. PGS is a thin graphite sheet obtained by sintering a sheet of plastic film in an anoxic environment at a high temperature of 3,000°C.

The C atoms are bonded together in a hexagonal shape in a planar manner, and this planar structure is vertically stacked to form layers. The graphite sheet is 25-100μm thick. "The surface is flat at the atomic level," Fujioka said.

The group formed crystals of GaN and aluminum nitride (AlN) on PGS by using a proprietary PVD process developed by Fujioka and others and found that the crystals thus grown have a superior quality free from defects.

"We conducted X-ray analysis and examined the photoexcitation emission spectrum," Fujioka said. "The crystal quality was on par with or even higher than that of commercially available GaN LEDs."

The wavelength corresponding to the emission inherent to GaN (3.3eV) is approximately 365nm. But an ordinary GaN has some emission peaks at wavelengths longer than that due to the crystal defects. GaN crystals formed by the latest technology do not have such undesired emission peaks.

The PVD process used in the formation of GaN film is called "pulse excitation deposition." It is Fujioka's proprietary technique developed based on a sputtering method used in the production of LCD panels, etc. According to this technique, metal Ga is sublimed by pulse plasma and then subjected to a reaction with nitrogen. The process temperature is reportedly 600-800°C when forming a GaN film.

"The technique is applicable to the formation of large films," Fujioka said. "It doesn't take a long time for a manufacturer to make large LEDs."

N atoms in GaN bonded to C atoms in PGS

According to the group, the key factor that made the formation of high quality GaN crystals on PGS is that the lattice constant of carbon (C) atoms constituting PGS and that of the hexagonal nitrogen (N) atoms in the nitride coincide with each other. Moreover, the C-C bonding in PGS tends to attract and bond N atoms.

"First, N atoms are fixed on PGS and then GaN crystals are formed on it," Fujioka said.

PGS is "widely used in heat radiation sheets of personal computers, etc because it has a thermal conductivity four times as high as that of copper (Cu) and they are much cheaper than sapphire substrates" (Fujioka). Because it is flexible and thin and has a high heat resistance, large bendable emission sheets as thin as cloth can be produced at a low cost, he said.

Gallium (Ga), known as an expensive material, "may only be required in a small amount even for a large film if the sheet is less than 1μm thick," he added.

The details of the latest technology will be presented by Fujioka and others at 55th Spring Meeting 2008 sponsored by the Japan Society of Applied Physics, which runs from March 27-30, 2008.

Innovative Ultra-Efficient Polarized LED Wins $30K Prize

Martin Schubert’s polarized LED could improve LCD displays, save energy

Troy, N.Y. — In recent years, light emitting diodes (LEDs) have begun to change the way we see the world. Now, a Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute student has developed a new type of LED that could allow for their widespread use as light sources for liquid crystal displays (LCDs) on everything from televisions and computers to cell phones and cameras.

Martin Schubert, a doctoral student in electrical, computer, and systems engineering, has developed the first polarized LED, an innovation that could vastly improve LCD screens, conserve energy, and usher in the next generation of ultra-efficient LEDs. Schubert’s innovation has earned him the $30,000 Lemelson-Rensselaer Student Prize.

“In our community of innovators, the Lemelson-Rensselaer Student Prize recognizes our most inspired and dedicated students for their ingenuity and deep understanding of the greater global implications of their innovations,” said Rensselaer President Shirley Ann Jackson. “Martin Schubert is both a talented engineer and inspired entrepreneur. He launched his innovation not only because he had the engineering prowess, but because he also has a remarkable understanding of the technological, environmental, and energy saving outcomes his enlightened innovation will bring. Today we applaud him and the other finalists for their dedication and excellence, and we encourage them to continue to spark informed innovation around the world.”

Schubert is the second recipient of the $30,000 Lemelson-Rensselaer Student prize. The prize, which was first given in 2007, is awarded to a Rensselaer senior or graduate student who has created or improved a product or process, applied a technology in a new way, or otherwise demonstrated remarkable inventiveness.

For photos and video of the winner and award finalists, as well as a Webcast of the announcement ceremony, please visit: www.rpi.edu/lemelson.

The Next Generation of LEDs
Schubert’s polarized LED advances current LED technology in its ability to better control the direction and polarization of the light being emitted. With better control over the light, less energy is wasted producing scattered light, allowing more light to reach its desired location. This makes the polarized LED perfectly suited as a backlighting unit for any kind of LCD, according to Schubert. Its focused light will produce images on the display that are more colorful, vibrant, and lifelike, with no motion artifacts.

Schubert first discovered that traditional LEDs actually produce polarized light, but existing LEDs did not capitalize on the light’s polarization. Armed with this information, he devised an optics setup around the LED chip to enhance the polarization, creating the first polarized LED.

The invention could advance the effort to combine the power and environmental soundness of LEDs with the beauty and clarity of LCDs. Schubert expects that his polarized LED could quickly become commonplace in televisions and monitors around the world, replacing widely used fluorescent lights that are less efficient and laden with mercury. His innovation also could be used for street lighting, high-contrast imaging, sensing, and free-space optics, he said.

The Next Generation of Lighting Researcher
Schubert is the son of renowned lighting research expert and senior chair of the Rensselaer Future Chips Constellation, E. Fred Schubert. The younger Schubert, who received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Cornell University in electrical engineering, was set to pursue a career in computer chip development. But his father quickly identified his skills and ideas for the advancement of lighting technology and recruited him to join the large lighting research effort at Rensselaer.

“Martin Schubert has had the opportunity to work in one of the most advanced and well-known lighting research teams in the world,” said Rensselaer Dean of Engineering Alan Cramb. “And Schubert has shown that not only can he keep up in the lab, but he can also independently excel and innovate. His discovery of the first polarized LED marks an important advance in photonics technology that I am sure will resonate in photonics laboratories and companies around the world. Schubert is absolutely a young engineer to watch.”

Under the tutelage of his adviser, Michael Shur, the Patricia W. and C. Sheldon Roberts ’48 Professor of Solid State Electronics and director of the Rensselaer/IBM Center for Broadband Data Transfer Science and Technology, Schubert quickly excelled in the field. As soon as he arrived at Rensselaer, he began working nearly independently on his research, using some of the top research equipment available to the constellation, including a cutting-edge clean room laboratory.

During his time with Rensselaer Schubert has published three peer-reviewed, archival papers and filed for several patent applications on his polarized LEDs. In addition, Schubert is co-author of 15 other papers on related research, including a paper in one of the top journals in his field, Nature Photonics. The Nature research on the world’s first ideal anti-reflective coating was featured in media outlets around the world, from NPR’s “Morning Edition” to the London Daily Telegraph and Scientific American magazine.

Schubert is expected to complete his doctorate in electrical engineering this fall. After graduation he plans to pursue a career in semiconductor devices and photonics.

Schubert was born in Germany and grew up in New Jersey and later the Boston area.

The Lemelson Program
Schubert joins last year’s winner of the Lemelson-Rensselaer student prize, doctoral student Brian Schulkin. Schulkin, who invented the first portable terahertz sensing device, the “Mini-Z”, is currently working on an even smaller device and was recently named to the 2007 Scientific American 50 — the magazine’s prestigious annual list recognizing leadership in science and technology.

The $30,000 Lemelson-Rensselaer Student Prize is funded through a partnership with the Lemelson-MIT Program, which has awarded the $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Student Prize to outstanding student inventors at MIT since 1995. More information can be found at http://web.mit.edu/invent/.

Timothy Lu, a graduate student in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology, is the 2008 winner for the $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Student Prize. Lu has invented processes that promise to enhance the effectiveness of antibiotics and help eradicate layers of bacteria known as biofilms, in order to combat bacterial infections, such as those caused by Escherichia coli biofilms and MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). More information is available on http://web.mit.edu/invent/n-pressreleases/n-press-08SP.html.

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign also joined Rensselaer as a new partner institution last year with the announcement of the $30,000 Lemelson-Illinois Student Prize. The winner of the 2008 Lemelson-Illinois Student Prize will be announced during a formal award ceremony on Feb. 28, 2008.

On May 26, the winners of all three student prizes will join together at MIT for a discussion and ceremony to honor all of the winners. In June, the winners will take part in the Lemelson-MIT Program’s second annual EurekaFest, a multiday event to celebrate the inventive spirit in Boston and Cambridge, Mass.

About the Lemelson-MIT Program
The Lemelson-MIT Program recognizes outstanding inventors, encourages sustainable new solutions to real-world problems, and enables and inspires young people to pursue creative lives and careers through invention. Jerome H. Lemelson, one of the world’s most prolific inventors, and his wife, Dorothy, founded the nonprofit Lemelson-MIT Program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1994. More information is online at http://web.mit.edu/invent/.

About Rensselaer
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is the nation’s oldest technological university. The university offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in engineering, the sciences, information technology, architecture, management, and the humanities and social sciences. Institute programs serve undergraduates, graduate students, and working professionals around the world. Rensselaer faculty are known for pre-eminence in research conducted in a wide range of fields, with particular emphasis in biotechnology, nanotechnology, information technology, and the media arts and technology. The Institute is well known for its success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace so that new discoveries and inventions benefit human life, protect the environment, and strengthen economic development.

Naturally I don't want to downplay the achievements or hard work of Mr. Martin's in any way, but looking over the finalists and entries while the watching the webcast of the award ceremony I personally think this prize may have been awarded improperly due to his fathers position at the institute. Though I may be biased in who should have won this award (as with the 2007 finalists; Eben Bayer and Greg Ten Eyck should have split last years prize), it seems many can innovate or build smaller widgets (and help pollute the planet), but few can truly help create a better world in which all species may live sustainably. Sure the work is great no doubt, but given the speed at which innovation(and the destruction of the planet) is progressing it may be a little late when one looks deeply at the bigger picture that is unfolding for all.

DIY High Performance LED Lighting System

Looks like the toadheads have done it again, this time a three (3) part series on on how to build your own DIY LED Lighting System the right way with off the shelf components! - these folks never cease to amaze me with the quality of technical articles published (especially if your an automotive gear head or overall geek like myself).

Turn on your LED Night Light and take a peek below!

Oh, and if the Jaycar Electronics link within the DIY LED Lighting article doesn't work don't fret it will be live again soon enough. Remember your exchange rate when calculating the actual cost for this project.

Part 1 : http://www.autospeed.com/A_109714/cms/article.html

Part 2 : http://www.autospeed.com/A_109715/cms/article.html

Part 3 : http://autospeed.com/cms/A_109716/article.html

Can't wait until these guys find the 15W HB LEDS to play around with.