Strategies in Light: Day 1, LED Lighting Report, New Start-ups

February 8, 2012 — The 2012 Strategies in Light conference kicked off today at the Santa Clara Convention Center with a series of five workshops, two tutorials and one all-day investor forum. The investor forum is where I chose to spend my day, as it provided the opportunity for solid state lighting and related startups to talk about their technologies, products and implicitly the opportunities they provide for investment. The forum was well populated by actual investors looking for opportunities to trade-in their Maseratis for something a bit more upscale.

Vrinda Bhandarkar at Strategies Unlimited presented a global market review for LED lighting. Not surprisingly, the largest available market is China, but the greatest number of individual LED replacement lights sold last year was in Japan, their high price notwithstanding. The market for luminaries is expected to be $20B by 2016 with a CAGR of 19%. Over the same period replacement lights will grow to $3B with a CAGR of 23%. The LED lighting cost index has the potential to drop from 100 today to 20 by 2015, but that will require achievement of efficiencies across the entire component set.

HelioDel is a spin out of CEA-LETI that claims a 5x cost reduction breakthrough by using grown GaN nanowires in place of planar device structures. This enables the generation of a range of controlled colors on a single chip, with the prospect of eventually eliminating the need for phosphors altogether.

Just as CFL technology was met with consumer resistance due to the its color, LED lighting is subject to consumer criticism due to flickering associated with the incoming alternating current. In an environment that is illuminated totally by LEDs, there is a segment of the population that reacts adversely with symptoms ranging from headache and eyestrain to epileptic seizures. Privately-held iWatt Inc. is a four year old company that manufactures digital control LED power supplies that are already implemented worldwide to improve the human factors associated with LED lighting.

Xicato has taken the novel approach of separating the photon generation from the color tuning by using commodity LEDs with something called Corrected Cold Phosphor Technology™. The color temperature of the lighting unit is determined by placing the phosphors in a translucent cover disk that is spatially separated from the LED devices. Furthermore, the disk is integrated into the cooling system, so that its color remains constant over a lifetime of several years and is highly uniform from one device to the next.

CoolEdge Lighting is a stealth startup spun out from the University of Illinois that is commercializing an all-plastic flexible “light engine” that does not require heat sinks or wire bonding. Small commodity LEDs are used from four foundries. General Manager Wade Sheen assured the audience that development of the product is based entirely on good engineering; magic was not invoked.

The conference continues for the next two days with a technical conference and supplier exhibition. Read Fury’s reports from Days 2 and 3:

Michael A. Fury, Ph.D., is director & senior technology analyst, Techcet Group in North Plains, OR.


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2 thoughts on “Strategies in Light: Day 1, LED Lighting Report, New Start-ups

  1. Leon Black

    Leon S. Black
    12402 N. 57th Way | 480-465-6058 |

    To Whom It May Concern:
    My name is Leon Black I am working with the team of scientists in Phoenix Arizona that have developed a new type of electronic light. With this technology we will be able to create new industries. We currently have the light working in the lab and within the next couple months we will have prototypes that we could put on the desktop to demonstrate. I’m in the process of creating a press release explaining the benefits of this new technology. Here’s a list of some of the benefits we can create with this technology.

    1. Completely new type of electronic light, each application will be patentable.
    2. This light requires no type of filament.
    3. Does not require any types of gases.
    4. Produces light without requiring the byproduct of heat which is what most lights require to generate the light this light does not use heat to produce light. Like LEDs and Florescent lights, it is not 100% efficient so there is some waste heat – about the same as LEDs
    5. This light can be designed to meet any wavelength. Since no other type of light can make that statement, it will open the door for other applications not yet determined.
    6. This light can be switched on and off in excess of 1 million times per second which means it can pulse at the speed of fiber optics.
    7. This light will not change its wavelength due to heat. It will be stable.
    8. This light can be designed to meet specific applications that cannot be reached with current technology
    9. Since this light is not created by heat, its life expectancy will be considerably longer than existing technologies excluding LED. We will be similar to LED.
    10. Light is not just the color of visible light but also extends into the ultraviolet range, including x-ray and microwave. Including millimeter waves lengths
    11. With this lite we can create grow lights that will meet the exact requirements for plants to flower and grow on a 24-hour basis without the high cost of the byproduct of heat, reducing the cost to condition the space.
    12. With this light we can create x-ray lamps that can be smaller, faster more powerful with less unused x-rays emitted than standard technology.
    13. This light can be switched on extremely fast, making better x-rays and not have to worry about movement.
    14. We could produce ultra-small X-ray tools for the dental industry that could fit on the dental tray approximately the same size as a dental hand piece.
    15. Because we can turn on and off this light at extremely high speeds it can meet the requirements to transmit data at designed wavelengths. This may allow us to communicate underwater which cannot be successfully utilized in today’s market. We can pick wavelengths that pass through sea water and modulate our light to communicate underwater.
    16. Because this light can be designed to closely match the characteristics of direct sunlight we will be able to produce high output lights to take place of high-pressure sodium’s and high-pressure metal halide lights without the byproduct of heat “far more energy-efficient”. These lights will last longer than existing technology because it will not require high heat to create the light. We can closely match the characteristics of direct sunlight and be far more energy efficient than things like halide lights. We will still produce some heat, about as much as LEDs, but it will be easier to handle as it will be from a different part of the ‘bulb’ and our mechanism is not heat sensitive like LEDs.
    17. This light will be able to detect cancer and be able to stay on the exact wavelength indefinitely, to be able to produce precise surgery. This light will NOT detect cancer. It can used with advanced techniques that utilize Quantum dots and DNA matching proteins as fluorophores. Our light can match the fluorophores and delineate the cancer for the surgeon to remove. Alternatively, perhaps we can destroy the cancer by burning it with a properly chosen wavelength. This will obviously require development in conjunction with some Institute of Health.
    18. Other applications could be the development of new types of street lighting for intersection streetlights. Where one bulb could produce the exact colors of red green and yellow and reduce the weight and requirements to change lenses and other covered lights for a single application. Our light would eliminate the problems that LEDs have as traffic lights that is they are not temperature sensitive and will survive Arizona summers.

    The scientists that I’m working with are world-renowned in nanotechnology and quantum dot technology. Our lead scientist has a PhD in physics and worked as the lead scientist for a major corporation here in Phoenix Arizona. I am tasked by the team to acquire R&D funding to continue the development of this technology. My question to your team is, how would a small research team that has created a major breakthrough in electronic lighting get funding to continue their R&D without having to give up major ownership of the idea. My second question would be do you know of any company or corporation that could support this request. I am going to start down the path to apply for grants from the US Government but we all know this will take some time. I would like to talk to your team to explain the basics of the technology and maybe get an idea on where to go from here. I look forward in talking to your team.
    Leon Black
    Date: 6/2/16


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