EPA Addresses Vague Guidelines for LED Components

Sep 13, 2011
With the LED market continually growing, arising regulations will need to be updated as well. To handle these discrepancies between codes and the current LED market standing, the EPA has been developing new Energy-Star qualifications for SSL lamps and luminaires.

Up until recently, there were few Energy Star specifications for "sub-component level performance data" related to lumen maintenance for LED packages, arrays, and modules. The EPA collaborated with LED package and array manufacturers to create the June 24, 2011 draft (reviewed by stakeholders) and received responses regarding three topics.

First, testing requirements for LED arrays have been changed to a 'worst-case scenario' system, where the largest LED array used in a product is tested. The guideline was added to account for previous problems with wire bond failures adding to lumen depreciation in LED arrays.

Another topic covered was the precise definition of remote phosphor configuration -- what qualified the product as a part of the LED lighting category. For instance, there may need to be a minimum distance between the phosphor and the LED dies or packages, or other aspects may need to be fulfilled. Optical performance or "potential degradation of" components in the 'mixing chamber,' the space between the blue LEDs and phosphor, is also a concern. Current industry standards should be followed maintain Energy Star lumen requirements.

Lastly addressed were successor subcomponent provisions. As a result, the "successor" definition has been shortened to exclude LED die size, determining that it would not affect the comparability of successor lumen maintenance data. Also, some changes were made to the restrictions on deposition processes and drive current to better clarify those parts of the definitions. 

In addition to the three topics, there were other minutiae whose language was reworded to be more clear. 


EPA's LED Lighting Division:


Author:  Rebecca Milne

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