Permlight® Introduces X2 Technology for Sign Lighting
May 20, 2013...Bridgelux Inc., of Livermore California USA, a developer and manufacturer of LED lighting technologies, has closed an agreement with Toshiba Corporation. The agreement was originally announced on April 22, 2013 (See: Coverage), and the companies have now completed the transfer of Bridgelux GaN-on-Silicon technology assets to Toshiba.
The agreement includes an expanded licensing and manufacturing supply relationship. Bridgelux says it will continue to develop and market its GaN-on-Sapphire LED products as a fabless solid state lighting company. The companies began their collaboration in early 2012, and later in 2012 Toshiba became an investor in Bridgelux. As part of the previously announced agreement, Toshiba hired Bridgelux’s GaN-on-Silicon development team. In turn, Bridgelux reportedly retains a majority of its revenue generating operations as a fabless LED company.
“We are thrilled to be moving into the next stage of our joint work with Toshiba to advance GaN-on-Silicon-based solid state lighting technologies,” said Brad Bullington, CEO of Bridgelux. “As we outlined last month, Bridgelux will focus on commercializing, productizing and bringing to market GaN-on-Silicon technologies alongside a proven global scale semiconductor manufacturer. At the same time, we remain committed to our GaN-on-Sapphire business and look forward to continuing to provide world-class innovation and service to our customers.”
Bridgelux says it will continue developing GaN-on-Sapphire LED products which drive its operating revenue.
May 16, 2013...Bellvue, Washington-based eMagin claims to have developed the world’s brightest family of lower power sipping and full color organic light emitting diode (OLED) microdisplays. eMagin contends that the luminance of its Color OLED-XLSTM, at 1000 nits, is four times brighter than the current industry standard.
The company says that the new display requires just half the power compared to the company’s current color displays of the same brightness,. It is fully compatible with eMagin’s entire VGA, SVGA, XGA, SXGA and WUXGA product line.
The company's display technology enables optical solutions for head-mounted display applications requiring full color including: augmented vision/reality products used in simulation & training devices, and medical, maintenance and process-control ‘see-through’ data glasses and safety goggles.
eMagin will be demonstrating the Color OLED-XLS for the first time at next week’s Society for Information Display being held at the Vancouver Convention Center. Engineering samples are available immediately with fully qualified production units expected by the fourth quarter 2013.
“Our clients have been asking us to push the known limits in order to create more versatile color microdisplays that are both visible in bright environments and power efficient. We have met and surpassed both requirements with the development of the Color OLED-XLS,” said Andrew G. Sculley, president and CEO of eMagin Corporation. “This technology will enable indoor and outdoor augmented reality headsets for commercial, military and industrial use. We are well on the way to OLED microdisplays that can be even brighter for aircraft heads-up displays and consumer data glasses.”
May 16, 2013...QD Vision of Lexington, Massachusetts, a developer of quantum dot based LEDs, reports having achieved 19 cd/A efficiency and 18 percent external quantum efficiency. QD Vision’s latest QLED performance results are currently published in the 21 April 2013 issue of Nature Photonics. In the article, QD Vision reports achieving 18% External Quantum Efficiency (EQE) with a color saturated red quantum dot-based LED.
The company claims that this puts QLEDs near the fundamental efficiency limit of the technology which the company says is 20 percent for quantum dots.These results are two times higher efficiency than previously reported state-of-the-art efficiency of a QLED device. QD Vision says its current and luminous power efficiency are better than the best evaporated OLED result of the same color coordinate, and significantly better than what solution-processed OLEDs have thus far achieved.
In comparison, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) recently reported 11 percent external quantum efficiency for a blue organic light emitting diode (OLED) at 800 cd/m2. However Phosphor-based OLEDs are apparently not included in the company's comparison statement.
“This paper clearly demonstrates the fundamental efficiency advantage that QLEDs have over any other emissive display technology. Achieving this milestone is a great breakthrough and the result of years of hard work and dedication to achieving what others may have thought impossible,” said QD Vision co-founder Seth Coe-Sullivan.
While at an earlier stage of development and commercialization than QD Vision’s Color IQTM products, QD Vision says that its QLED performance is already suitable for use in certain products that require precision color solutions in an ultra-slim form factor, including monochrome visible and infrared displays, and lighting devices for machine and night vision applications.
May 15, 2013...Daktronics of Brookings, South Dakota USA, has designed, manufactured and
installed an integrated LED video display system for the City of Cedar Rapids,
Iowa. The display was installed at the home field of the Cedar Rapids Kernels,
Veterans Memorial Stadium. The stadium is a 5,300 capacity facility that opened
in 2002, replacing the original Veterans Memorial Stadium built in 1949.
“The Kernels have been very pleased through the entire process
with Daktronics,” said Andrew Pantini, communications manager for
the Kernels. “Installation, training and the technical support that
was needed allowed the Kernels to be up and running in a short period of time.
We have achieved the 'WOW' factor we were looking for under a very tight
installation and training schedule. The display is amazing even in bright,
direct sunlight." The new display, which measures approximately 30 feet high by 48 feet wide,
features a 15 millimeter pixel layout. It incorporates excellent image clarity
and contrast, multiple levels of protection from the elements and a robust
cabinet design. The display can show one large image to highlight live video and instant
replays, and can also be divided into separate windows to show a variety of
vivid graphics, colorful animations, up-to-the-minute statistics, scoring
information and sponsor advertisements, all with what the company describes as
outstanding brightness and wide-angle visibility. Daktronics DakStats® software is included with the installation for managing
game, season and career statistics. It delivers and tracks statistics and
provides in-depth statistical reports for all levels of play, from high school
to professional. Daktronics’ contends that its national statistical
leader board is a valuable product that no other company offers. “The City of Cedar Rapids and the Cedar Rapids Kernels have been a
long-time partner of Daktronics and we are excited about the opportunity to
continue our partnership with this new display installation,” said
Matt Warnke, Daktronics sales representative. “The new 15HD display
provides an even greater fan experience for fans of the Kernels and Veterans
Memorial Stadium.” Daktronics boasts that its LED video and messaging display technology offers
a long lifetime with minimal maintenance and low power consumption, providing
value and excitement for years to come.
“The Kernels have been very pleased through the entire process with Daktronics,” said Andrew Pantini, communications manager for the Kernels. “Installation, training and the technical support that was needed allowed the Kernels to be up and running in a short period of time. We have achieved the 'WOW' factor we were looking for under a very tight installation and training schedule. The display is amazing even in bright, direct sunlight."
The new display, which measures approximately 30 feet high by 48 feet wide, features a 15 millimeter pixel layout. It incorporates excellent image clarity and contrast, multiple levels of protection from the elements and a robust cabinet design.
The display can show one large image to highlight live video and instant replays, and can also be divided into separate windows to show a variety of vivid graphics, colorful animations, up-to-the-minute statistics, scoring information and sponsor advertisements, all with what the company describes as outstanding brightness and wide-angle visibility.
Daktronics DakStats® software is included with the installation for managing game, season and career statistics. It delivers and tracks statistics and provides in-depth statistical reports for all levels of play, from high school to professional. Daktronics’ contends that its national statistical leader board is a valuable product that no other company offers.
“The City of Cedar Rapids and the Cedar Rapids Kernels have been a long-time partner of Daktronics and we are excited about the opportunity to continue our partnership with this new display installation,” said Matt Warnke, Daktronics sales representative. “The new 15HD display provides an even greater fan experience for fans of the Kernels and Veterans Memorial Stadium.”
Daktronics boasts that its LED video and messaging display technology offers a long lifetime with minimal maintenance and low power consumption, providing value and excitement for years to come.
May 15, 2013...Verticle, an LED chip maker in Silicon Valley with production in Korea, has come out with a hexagonally shaped UV-LED on a copper substrate that can be driven at high current. The chip employs what the company calls Chemical Chip Separation Technology between the Cu substrate and the GaN-based UV-LED. Verticle points out that despite their numerous advantages UV LEDs tend to have lower optical power due to lower internal quantum efficiency (IQE) compared to blue LEDs.
While improving the IQE of UV epitaxial wafers is a long-term prospect, Verticle contends that an alternative way to boost the overall output of a UV-LED is to drive more current into the UV-LEDs, and manage the resulting heat. The company states that heat-related droop is more of an issue in UV-LEDs than in blue, and therefore, the company reasons, one of the main challenges of UV LEDs is lowering junction temperature.
In order to operate at higher current injection conditions and dissipating heat more efficiently, Verticle’s UV-LED chip is constructed with a copper substrate. As shown in the accompanying image that contains both graphs, Cu base vertical chip’s thermal resistance (Rth) is 2K/W lower than GaN/Si vertical chip. As a result, junction temperature (Tj) of GaN/Cu is lower than GaN/Si. It is noted that the junction temperature difference is 2 degrees C at 350 mA current injection between two chips, however, the difference become larger (6 degrees C) at 1A current injection.
The company points to testing it conducted that shows that a vertical Cu-base UV-LED chip has higher radiant flux than a lateral chip fabricated with same epitaxial wafer. Furthermore, Verticle says that its UV-LED chip on a Cu substrate can be driven at a higher current than other vertical chips constructed with different substrate materials. For example, the company says that Verticle’s GaN/Cu UV-LED chip does not saturate over 1A, while GaN/sapphire UV-LED chip start to saturate after 500mA. This suggests that a GaN/Cu chip has higher heat dissipation capability compared with GaN on other substrates, giving Verticle’s Cu-base UV-LED chip distinct advantages for applications in which high current injection and good thermal properties are required.
Verticle’s hexagonal UV-LED chip’s (45 Mil size) radiant fluxes are measured at 416mW at 350mA current injection, 787mW at 700mA, and 1025mW at 1A for the 392 nm wavelength, respectively. In addition, the company notes that it's hexagonal "Honeycomb" chip shape offers a higher extraction efficiency when packaged with a circular lens as a result of the near circular beam profile.
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May 16, 2013...As a result of a midnight premier of Star Trek - Into Darkness last night (this morning, technically), the forward-looking technology thoughts are flowing judiciously. Apparently I walked into the conclusion of the discussion on when and where the movie was happening, only to catch the part where I was being asked if I wanted to see it "when it opens". Lacking the context they thought I had overheard, I was inextricably offered the opportunity to earn the cool dad title (and it was indeed earned, while waiting to get in, as I showed the group of late teen to 20-somethings some tricks with the polarized lenses in the 3-D glasses). The movie is a must-see, by the way, for anyone clued-in to the backstory elements from the "Original" Star Trek movies' reality/timeline, of which this is a slight alternate. I did have to overlook what looked like a current generation swoopy T8 fluorescent fixture stuttering in the engineering section after the warp core was damaged in the treacherous attack... The solid state lighting in the 23rd century won't be re-striking as a result of the jolt, thank you very much. So from there I've been led to ponder what our LED "light bulb" should be doing for us in the future (and not the far future at that). The answer is "lots of stuff".
First, it will be important to set aside the fact that LED lighting visionaries insist that we'll simply "do light differently" and that we need to break out of the whole LED light bulb mentality. No doubt that is true, but no one is beaming our legacy technology away, so "differently" is more a matter of time, and it could be validly argued, a long time before light bulbs have been replaced by "something else" in both our homes and offices. We personally own table lamps that are probably 50 years old, and they aren't antiques, they are just "the lamps by the couch". Fresher ones in the house date back 15-20 years, with the newest fixtures (front porch, back porch) being the youngsters at 5 or so years. I believe the ceiling fan in our bedroom has been continuously spinning for 7 years, other than a 1 day period when it moved from the rental we installed it in over to the house we're in now. The point is that our indoor fixtures really don't wear out, and all are fresh enough to allow me to spin in at least one last bulb. If that has a nominal 25,000 hour life, I figure it's not going to be "driven" to change for the next 20 years or so (based on our 3 hours per night average use). Heck, given that the oldest floor lamp now has a Philips Hue installed, and with a recent iPhone update we have at least 3 devices in arms reach and available to control it, we actually are leaving the power switch on, greatly reducing the next most likely failure point. While our sockets will be disappearing at some point, that point will likely be a long time from now. Fluorescent sockets in many commercial spaces, especially T5's and T8's, will be similarly sticky, although the addition of more granular control capabilities that LED (aka "digital") lighting enables will provide retrofit opportunities ahead of simply waiting for the next interior renovation.
Residential markets - What do we want that bulb to do? Low power consumption, bright enough, good quality light, and useful for the variety of sockets that we have scattered around the house. That means dimmable on the ubiquitous TRIAC dimmer for the ceiling, as well as useful in a 3-way socket found in many table lamps. And there doesn't seem to be any reason that they can't also be fun, so something along the lines of a dimmable RGB-W configuration that also takes clues from the 3-way socket... and it communicates... to more than just "the controller" but with the big, wide world. There are examples of all the features out there now, most notably Philips aforementioned Hue for that communications and fun. Recent fun additions include "geo-fencing" so that your smartphone can trigger lights on or off as the residents come and go from the house, as well as support for If-This-Then-That (IFTT) to trigger events based on other events (our recent coverage here). Stock price hits a target, flash the office lights. Team wins, paint the house lighting the team colors). Cree, and probably a few lesser-known others, have recently hit that dimmable white part at a useful $10-ish price point, and at LIGHTFAIR we saw those 3-way and 75w to 100w replacement category "bright enough" introductions from Switch. Are we being unrealistic to envision a future that brings them all together into one affordable LED replacement lamp? That would be like expecting your cell phone to also take pictures, record movies, let you video conference, surf the web, watch movies and let you listen to music. I mean to be big dreamers, maybe we should also expect the phone to provide maps, point to point navigation as well as control your lights at home. So no, it's not unrealistic to expect the residential light bulb to handle the light, fun, dim, 3-way and communication, as well as adding in daylight or ambient light compensation and even other environmental sensing. My good old iPhone 3 had a stack of sensors and functions that were just waiting for apps to bring them to life, and there is no doubt our bulbs can and will do the same.
Commercial markets - Heavy on sensing, light on fun. It seems doubtful that the property operators are going to be very keen on creating the disco effect as the lighting color pulses to the music it "hears" through its microphone (just got that app for the Hue at home... hilarious fun to instigate a pillow fight with strobe mode on). But the tenants will be keen on the increased productivity that comes from more "effective" light. Whether it is better to be maintaining a constant ambient color temperature in spite of changing daylight, or modify the CCT as well as inject some additional "perky" wavelengths in those post-lunch sleepy times, we'll leave to the scientists to figure out. We will want the capabilities to be pretty much the same, whether retrofitting in a full LED-based luminaire, upgrading a troffer with a LED kit, or just swapping in LED tube. We'll expect them to integrate seamlessly into the control network, as well as operate with "coordinated autonomy", not needing to hear from "central control" that there is a particular amount of sunlight, or zero, one or a meeting's worth of bodies in the room. And since we need luminaires in every space, there is no reason that every kind of building-automation, environmental and security sensor that is practical should be integrated into the room's light. "A person-down sensor in every space" might be the battle cry (although one does have to wonder how it will respond when the boss starts doing his or her yoga... yes there will be unpredicted issues along the way).
Timing - Slower than desired, but faster than expected. It's inevitable, as technology advances often are. We expect a lot from our technology, and while we may want it pretty quickly, since we don't have it, we don't "miss it" for the lack. I still harken back to the year 2000 when I sat in a room of "normal" people here in high tech Austin, who were polled on how many had fast (broadband) internet in their homes. It was about 5-10% that had access of something other than dial-in, and at the then-blazing speed of 500K to 1Mbit data rates. A scant decade or so later, and someone without that data rate streaming into their pocket is considered the odd man out. Change is like that, and technical change is accelerating, not peaking by any means. We'll have our light bulb "egg-laying-wool-milk-pigs" before the end of this decade, with Grade AA quality on every feature. Need pictures of the strobing pillow fight? Just tell the light.
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