The Promising Future of LED Lighting

LEDs hold promise in the world’s race to produce more energy-efficient lighting. LEDs use less energy, last longer, and allow more control of color and direction of light. It is indeed a major technological advance over both incandescent and fluorescent lighting.

In 2010, lighting consumed an estimated 19% of U.S. electricity. LEDs for lighting could reduce that electricity consumption manifold by 2030.Moreover, LEDs could ease the quantity and types of solid waste generated by lighting, because they last up to five times longer than other lighting solutions and contain no toxic materials. Moreover, the ability to fine-tune color with red, green, and blue (RGB) LEDs adds new options for performance and creativity. Ultimately, LEDs will function well beyond illuminating a space. They will also look and fit better with new styles, colors and fixtures.

In the presence of high cost, how will LED’s fulfill their tremendous promise? It is difficult to convince the price conscious consumers to make the more expensive purchase in order to save energy cost. Mass production, innovations and manufacturing savings over time, is likely to reduce prices. But it is yet to be seen for the costs to drop enough to win over general consumer market.

Let’s give LEDs lights intelligence and style by making them smart. It’s time to give these lights eyes, a voice, and the ability to compute. Designing high-value semiconductors into lighting applications will optimize energy efficiency, maximize LED’s lifetime, and reduce maintenance costs. By investing wisely in their improvement, LEDs will run the rest of the race and they will come over the hurdles by running smart.

With the advancement of technology, ambient light sensing allows lights to dim when other sources of light already light a space sufficiently. Ambient light sensors (ALS) detect the amount of light in the range of the sensor. These simple devices become the eyes and voice of an LED lighting system, and also the controllers. When there is already enough light in the room, extra lighting is completely unnecessary. The lamps can be dimmed or turned off completely by the electronic communication, reducing power consumption and increasing lamp lifetime. All these factors will translate into energy conservation and lower operating costs.

It is clear that LED lighting holds the potential to transform our conventional lighting and save huge amounts of energy. Adding the critical elements of “intelligent” lighting—ALS, communication, and energy measurement—will make LEDs far more useful and appealing. With intelligence, LEDs will reach their full potential and beat out traditional forms of lighting in the race that is already being run every day. Where does all this leave us? Only time, and intelligence, will tell.