This post was written by Keith Dawson for UBM Tech’s community Web site All LED Lighting, sponsored by Philips Lumileds. It is archived here for informational purposes only because the All LED Lighting site may go dark at any time. This material is Copyright 2013-2015 by UBM Americas.


Monday Roundup: Bright Lights, Dark Road

This week: Seoul Semi's new high-power LED, lighting homes with bottles of water, and BMW's laser-powered headlamp booster.

BMW's laser-boosted headlamps
A few weeks back when we discussed phosphor-converted solid-state lighting powered by laser diodes, instead of by LEDs, we mentioned that BMW had been working with such technology for headlamps. Now it has begun talking about the details of a headlamp boosting system that results in "a high-beam range which has never been seen before." It may appear in production cars (such as the mid-engine hybrid sport i8 model) in late 2014.

"The laser system is based around a high-luminance solid-state point-source, used to excite a remote yellow phosphor. BMW employs a high-power multi-mode blue laser diode, with an emitting surface said to be 10,000 times smaller than that of the blue chip in a high-power white pc-LED," reports.

Two new standard books from Zhaga
Zhaga, the international organization enabling the interchangeability of LED light sources from different manufacturers, has published two new interface specifications, Books 7 and 8. Book 7 deals with rectangular and linear LED modules with separate drivers, intended primarily for indoor lighting applications, that typically affix to luminaires with screws. Book 8 covers a socketable, drum-shaped LED light engine with integrated driver, intended for downlighting applications. The new specifications, along with the previously published Books 1, 2, and 3, can be downloaded here.

Seoul Semi's new high-power LED
The company announced the Z5-M1 family, which the company claims are optimized for high efficacy. The Z5-M1 achieves up to 150 lumens/Watt at high color temperatures and 132 lm/W in warm white. They LEDs are available in CCTs from 2600K to 7000K at CRIs of 70+ and 80+. Here is a spec sheet. The figure shows spectra for warm white (red), neutral white (green), and cool white (blue) for the LED family.

Lighting homes with water bottles
This is not a story of LED lighting, but rather of a less expensive and more ingenious invention. In 2011, in the Philippines, someone (unnamed) thought of putting water and chlorine in a plastic bottle and inserting that through a hole in the roof. The result, during daylight hours, is a "solar bulb" providing inside illumination of over 700 lumens, equivalent to a 55-Watt incandescent bulb, without electricity. The technique is called Liter of Light, abbreviated LOL, and it's now a global open-source movement. The first link above tells the story of LOL volunteers installing such a light in a house in a slum (that's the term the reporter uses) in the Indian town of Ejipura.

In the Philippines, more than 28,000 solar bulbs have been installed in Manila, and thousands more in 20 other cities. The organization behind LOL, the Myshelter Foundation, has established beachheads in Peru, Colombia, and Switzerland (from which the volunteers came to light the Indian town).

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