LED Reflector Lamps Moving Beyond Incandescent Terms
The US Department of Energy has completed Series 16 of testing through the DOE Solid-State Lighting CALiPER program, analyzing the performance of a group of 13 LED products labeled as BR30 or R30 lamps. Report 16 Results show substantial improvement versus earlier CALiPER testing of similar products, but point out the need for a broader range of lumen outputs and distribution types. Finally, the report questions the adequacy of using existing reflector lamp categories for LED products.
Many of the LED lamps tested proved to be effective replacements for conventional directional lamps: showing lumen output of equivalent to 65 W or 75 W incandescent BR30/R30 lamps and, with a few exceptions, showing color quality similar to the incandescents. Almost all the products showed efficacy between 51 and 65 lm/W.
Having matched the performance of incandescent in terms of lumen output, DOE believes the LED industry should focus on matching luminous intensity distributions (beampatterns) similar to the incandescent benchmarks. Specifiers are accustomed to having multiple combinations of lumen output (e.g., 450 lumens, 700 lumens, which in the past was defined in terms of wattage) and distribution type (e.g., spot, narrow flood, flood, wide flood) from a single manufacturer.
Further, LED lamp manufacturers are faced with a difficult task in determining the appropriate lamp designation, given the performance overlap among reflector lamps labeled PAR, R, BR, and ER. These existing designations are perhaps inadequate because they are based on incandescent-technology shapes and optics not applicable to integrated LED lamps. It is possible that LED lighting could abandon the LED benchmarks and establish new or altered naming conventions that would be more helpful in identifying LED products for customers.
A summary of the CALiPER Series 16 results is now available for download on the DOE SSL website at www.ssl.energy.gov/reports.html. The department allows detailed test results from CALiPER testing to be distributed in the public interest for noncommercial, educational purposes only. Detailed test results for Series 16 will be available soon through the searchable online CALiPER system: www.ssl.energy.gov/search.html.