Meet Your Energy Savings Superhero: LED Lighting
LEDs are the latest technology in energy efficient lighting. While they aren’t new technology (invented in 1962), they have undergone major advancements making them today’s leading lighting choice for optimal light quality and energy efficiency.
What is an LED?
An LED, or Light Emitting Diode, is a type of solid-state lighting that uses a semiconductor device to convert electricity into light. The electrical current passes through a microchip, illuminating the LEDs and results in visible light. LEDs are directional light sources, meaning that as they emit light, they use energy more efficiently because they emit light in a specific direction and dissipate heat. As a result, LEDs use approximately 75% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs!
What are the benefits of LED lighting?
In addition to increased energy efficiency, LED lighting benefits include:
- Durability: LEDs are made with epoxy lenses instead of glass, making them more resistant to damage. As a result, they can easily withstand impact/vibrations and operate well in damp, humid, or ambient, cold conditions, making them suitable for extreme environments.
- Longevity: LED lights can last for years. Unlike incandescent or compact fluorescent lighting, LEDs don’t burn out. Instead, they begin to dim as they approach the end of their life cycle, preventing areas from becoming totally dark as LED lamps age. Unlike fluorescent bulbs, LEDs illuminate the moment they are energized.
- Versatility: LEDs come in a range of sizes, wattages, shapes, and colors for a variety of lighting needs. LED lights can easily produce different colors or color temperature ranges without gels or filters, depending on the application. They also can be used where dimming is needed.
- Utility: Most lighting fixtures accommodate LED bulbs without modification. They can also be digitally controlled for efficiency and flexibility.
- Cost-efficiency: In addition to energy savings, LEDs have declined in cost, making them more accessible for a variety of applications.
What are the applications for LED?
Because the cost of LEDs has declined since their invention, there is now a wide range of applications for LEDs including use in interior and exterior lighting for schools, warehouses, office buildings, commercial properties, and homes. They can easily be retrofitted into existing buildings and are widely utilized in new building projects. In the case of LED retrofits, existing fixtures often do not require modification if LEDs are used.
Is LED right for my building?
LEDs can be utilized in most lighting situations as a more efficient, cost-saving lighting source than previous incandescent, fluorescent, halogen, and CFL bulbs. Because of their durability, longevity, and versatility LEDs are here to stay. Improvements in LED technology are expected, only further increasing the prospect for greater use of LEDs in the future.
LED retrofits are a common energy saving measure on our energy savings projects and new LED fixtures are installed in our design-build projects.
National Engineering Manager