New LED Traffic Lights Too Cool.. and thats not cool December 21, 2009Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in Controversial information, LED Lights.
Tags: energy saving bulb, energy saving light bulb, energy saving lighting, energy-saving traffic signal lamps, LED, LED Lights, led traffic accident, led traffic light, LED traffic light danger, LED traffic signal, light bulb, light bulbs, traffic light, traffic lights, traffic signal accident, traffic signal danger
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Zoinks! LEDs have been all the rage as of lately but seems some applications are working out so smoothly. Check out this article from the Detroit Times that discusses the danger of LED traffic signal lamps.
New traffic lights too cool
They save energy but emit less heat, so snow may block signal
Tom Greenwood / The Detroit News
Some northern states are reporting a problem with light-emitting diode traffic lights: The cool burning LEDs don’t generate enough heat to melt ice and snow that accumulates in front of the lenses on the signals.
Although there are no LED-related reports of crashes or deaths in Michigan, the problem has reportedly led to dozens of accidents in other states.
But the situation is still being addressed, said Utpal Dutta, professor of traffic engineering at the University of Detroit Mercy.
“We are working on the problem,” Dutta said. “We may put a longer shade on the light to shield it from ice and snow, but we’re not sure about putting a heater into the light. A heater would cost us money to run the lights, which we don’t want to do.
“But we will come up with something down the line. In terms of energy and life cycle savings of LEDs, this is a tiny problem.”
On the rare occasion when an LED signal is covered with snow, responding work crews simply clear it with a blast of compressed air.
Longer lasting lights
Road Commission for Oakland County spokesman Craig Bryson said LEDs are still better than traditional lights because they need to be replaced only once every seven years.
“There were a lot more times where there were traffic signals with burned-out bulbs than there are signals with snowy LEDs,” Bryson said.
The LEDs used in traffic signals aren’t really a single bulb but are actually arrays of hundreds of individual electronic lights about the size of a pencil eraser.
The appeal of the lights is that they use up to 90 percent less energy, last longer and burn brighter than traditional bulbs.
For Franklin residents George and Madeline Haddad, snow on LED traffic lights hasn’t been a problem.
“We’ve never encountered that problem when we’re on the road, and it really isn’t something I’m worried about,” George Haddad said. “I can’t ever remember seeing traffic signals blocked by ice and snow.”
Bryson said a number of circumstances have to merge for the LEDs to be obstructed by ice or snow.
“The wind has to blow at a certain speed and a certain angle to end up in against the lens,” he said. “Plus the snow has to be wet and heavy. This problem happened with the old bulbs as well.”
Cost only factor in switching
William Taylor, professor emeritus of civil engineering at Michigan State University, understands how the LEDs can be driving problem in snowy weather.
“It kind of makes sense that they could cause a snow problem because they’re so efficient that it doesn’t make all that much heat,” Taylor said.
“But should we switch back to the old incandescent bulbs? Only if it eventually costs more for crews to clean off the LED lights than they would save in energy costs.”
LED traffic signals are common on the MSU campus, Taylor said.
“But as a driver, I’ve never noticed any problems with them,” he said.
Resitance to EU’s lightbulb ban October 29, 2009Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in cfl, compact fluorescent, Controversial information, incandescent light bulb, light bulb, Light bulbs in pop culture.
Tags: cfl, compact fluorescent, compact fluorescent light bulb, Energy saving, energy saving bulb, energy saving compact light bulb, energy saving light bulb, energy saving lighting, EU incandescent light bulb ban, eu light bulb ban, european light bulb ban, fluorescent, fluorescent light bulb, fluorescent lighting, incandescent light bulb, incandescent lightbulb, incandescent lightbulb ban, light, light bulb, light bulbs, lightbulb, spiral, spiral light bulb, Technology of a light bulb
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Zoinks! The European Light Bulb ban is still a controversial subject! Seems some of the citizens don’t want to let go those incandescents! Check out this LA Times article!
Resistance to EU’s lightbulb ban By Henry Chu Los Angeles Times
FRANKFURT, Germany – Ulf Erdmann Ziegler takes a dim view of the newfangled lightbulbs people are required to buy, so dim that he has stocked up on 3,000 of the old, incandescent bulbs – enough, he has calculated, to last him his lifetime. His stockpile is the fruit of a frenzied shopping spree. For weeks, he spent many of his waking hours on the phone and online tracking down vendors and snapping up incandescent bulbs. The buying binge was necessary, he said, to beat a ban by the European Union. As of Sept. 1, the manufacture and import of 100-watt incandescent bulbs have been outlawed within the EU, to be followed by bulbs of lesser wattage in coming years. Once current stocks are gone, incandescent bulbs will join Thomas Edison in the history books. The ban is part of the EU’s effort against global warming. The object is to encourage people to switch from energy-wasting incandescent bulbs to compact fluorescent lamps, which last longer and are up to 75 percent more efficient. For EU officials, it’s all about the math. Ditching the older bulbs, they say, will save 40 billion kilowatt-hours a year by 2020 – equal to the output of 10 power stations. The United States is to begin phasing them out in the next few years. But not everyone considers it such a bright idea. Dissenters have sprung up across the Continent, people who complain that fluorescent lamps are inferior, cost more, and pose their own environmental problems. Art galleries fret over how best to display their works without the warm glow of incandescent bulbs. A petition to save the conventional bulb is circulating on the Internet. “There’s been quite a bit of consumer backlash,” said Peter Hunt, chief executive of Britain’s Lighting Association. To help consumers and manufacturers get used to the change, the EU decided not to ax all incandescents at once. The ban from September covers only clear bulbs of 100 watts and frosted ones of all wattages. Clear incandescent lamps of 60 and 40 watts are to be eased out by September 2012. The advantages of the ban outweigh any deficiencies, EU officials say. Good-quality fluorescent bulbs can last years, far longer than conventional bulbs, so while they cost more, they are more economical in the long run. The new lamps also save on electricity costs because of their more efficient use of energy. In conventional bulbs, most of the energy is lost as heat rather than converted to light. Then how to explain that low-energy fluorescent lamps have been around for 25 years but have never caught on with ordinary consumers? “The early ones were the size of large jam jars, they flickered, they had a cold blue light, and they took a long time to switch on,” Hunt said. The technology has improved considerably, Hunt said. None of that matters to Ziegler. Months before the Sept. 1 deadline, he went through every room of his apartment with a floor plan, marking an X wherever there was a light fixture and noting what kind of bulb it required. His local vendor worked out how many bulbs Ziegler would need for the next decade. “I said forget 10 years,” Ziegler recalled. “I want a lifetime supply.”
Tags: cfl, compact fluorescent, compact fluorescent light bulb, Energy saving, energy saving bulb, energy saving compact light bulb, energy saving light bulb, energy saving lighting, fluorescent, fluorescent light bulb, fluorescent lighting, green, incandescent light bulb, incandescent lightbulb, incandescent lightbulb ban, LED, led lighting, light, light bulb, light bulbs, lightbulb, spiral, spiral light bulb, Technology of a light bulb
Zoinks! Check out this editorial piece from the Wall Street Journal extolling the virtues of incandescent light.
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 will effectively phase out incandescent light bulbs by 2012-2014 in favor of compact fluorescent lamps, or CFLs. Other countries around the world have passed similar legislation to ban most incandescents.
Will some energy be saved? Probably. The problem is this benefit will be more than offset by rampant dissatisfaction with lighting. We are not talking about giving up a small luxury for the greater good. We are talking about compromising light. Light is fundamental. And light is obviously for people, not buildings. The primary objective in the design of any space is to make it comfortable and habitable. This is most critical in homes, where this law will impact our lives the most. And yet while energy conservation, a worthy cause, has strong advocacy in public policy, good lighting has very little.
Even without taking into account people’s preferences, CFLs, which can be an excellent choice for some applications, are simply not an equivalent technology to incandescents in all applications. For example, if you have dimmers used for home theater or general ambience, you must buy a compatible dimmable CFL, which costs more, and even then it may not work as desired on your dimmers. How environmental will it be for frustrated homeowners to remove and dispose of thousands of dimmers? What’s more, CFLs work best in light fixtures designed for CFLs, and may not fit, provide desired service life, or distribute light in the same pleasing pattern as incandescents. How environmental will it be for homeowners to tear out and install new light fixtures?
None of these and other considerations appear to have been included in the technical justification for this law. Instead, the decision appears to have been made entirely based on a perception of efficiency gains. Light-source efficacy, expressed as lumens of light output per watt of electrical input, has been used as a comparative metric justifying encouragement of CFLs. But this metric is flawed for one simple reason: It is a laboratory measurement and a guide, not a truth, in the field; actual energy performance will depend on numerous application characteristics and product quality.
If energy conservation were to be the sole goal of energy policy, and efficacy were to be the sole technical consideration, then why CFLs? If we really want to save energy, we would advocate high-pressure sodium lamps—those large bulbs that produce bright orangish light in many streetlights. Their efficacy is more than double what CFLs can offer. Of course this would not be tolerated by the public. This choice shows that we are willing to advocate bad lighting—but not horrible lighting.
Not yet, at least. Energy regulations pending in Washington set aggressive caps on power allowances for energy-using systems in commercial and residential buildings. These requirements have never been tested.
Here’s my modest proposal to determine whether the legislation actually serves people. Satisfy the proposed power limits in all public buildings, from museums, houses of worship and hospitals to the White House and the homes of all elected officials. Of course, this will include replacing all incandescents with CFLs. At the end of 18 months, we would check to be certain that the former lighting had not been reinstalled, and survey all users to determine satisfaction with the resulting lighting.
Based on the data collected, the Energy Independence and Security Act and energy legislation still in Congress would be amended to conform to the results of the test. Or better yet, scrapped in favor of a thoughtful process that could yield a set of recommendations that better serve our nation’s needs by maximizing both human satisfaction and energy efficiency.
As a lighting designer with more than 50 years of experience, having designed more than 2,500 projects including the relighting of the Statue of Liberty, I encourage people who care about their lighting to contact their elected officials and urge them to re-evaluate our nation’s energy legislation so that it serves people, not an energy-saving agenda.
Mr. Brandston (www.concerninglight.com) is a lighting consultant, professor and artist.
Light bulb ban finds some Europeans in the dark September 10, 2009Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in cfl, compact fluorescent, Controversial information.
Tags: cfl, compact fluorescent, compact fluorescent light bulb, controverisal light bulb ban, Energy saving, energy saving bulb, energy saving compact light bulb, energy saving light bulb, energy saving lighting, eu light bulb ban, fluorescent, fluorescent light bulb, fluorescent lighting, fluorescent tube, incandescent light bulb, incandescent lightbulb, incandescent lightbulb ban, light, light bulb, light bulbs, lightbulb, spiral, spiral light bulb, Technology of a light bulb
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Zoinks! More controversy over the lightbulb ban in Europe! Check it out!
Light bulb ban finds some Europeans in the dark
By Andrew Heining
Um, lighten up?
A week after the EU’s light bulb ban went into effect – traditional filament, incandescent bulbs over 100 watts may no longer be bought by retailers, though old stock may be sold until it’s gone – some Europeans are hoarding – and howling.
Old habits die hard, and among the Europeans proving the saying true are patrons at Chris Abbott’s “Abbott’s DIY,” a British hardware store with two branches. Abbott told Sky News, and the Dartmouth Chronicle reports, that:
“Everyone wants to be more environmentally friendly, but in some cases the low energy bulbs are just not suitable and until there is a viable alternative the opinion I am getting is that they should not yet be banned, until such time that there is a better quality alternative.”
“In both our stores we have seen unprecedented buying of all traditional types of light bulbs, and speaking to other hardware retailers across the region they are all experiencing the same.
“But as the ban is only on import and manufacture, retailers are still allowed to sell them, so we have filled our storeroom up to bursting point so that we can continue to supply our customers for at least the next few years.”
One possible answer to the light-quality complaints: this LED-based bulb from Sharp. As design blog Inhabitat reported in June, the bulb comes with a dimmer-switch remote control that can change the output between seven shades of white. One concern it doesn’t address? The cost. The Sharp bulbs cost $82 apiece.
But hoarding the old-style bulbs doesn’t make much economic sense, either, government officials are saying. CFLs use significantly less energy, and immediately begin paying themselves off. The New York Times explains:
One bulb can cost €10, or $14 — or a lot more, depending on type — whereas traditional incandescent bulbs cost about 70 cents each. But E.U. officials argued that the energy savings would cut average household electricity bills by up to €50 a year, amounting to about €5 billion annually. That would help buoy the economy if consumers spent their savings, they said.
That rationale isn’t swaying some Britons. They’ve found a loophole in the plan and are exploiting it. The new ban covers light bulbs sold for home use, but it can’t touch those meant for industrial applications. As Telegraph reader Brian Rogers told the paper:
I suggest you pay a visit to your local electrical wholesaler and ask for a “rough service” lamp. These are identical to the normal ones except for slightly thicker glass envelopes and extra filament supports. They are more robust than the normal household item as their main use is in garage pit inspection lights and they need to stand up to more abuse.
The US has a similar CFL mandate going into effect in 2012. In addition to the concerns already mentioned, some in the US are decrying the health hazards of the new bulbs.
CNN, in its spectacularly headlined “The fluorescent light bulb boogeyman,” points to a 2007 case in Maine, where a woman, aware that CFLs contained toxic mercury, called state officials who told her to bring in a hazardous waste cleaning crew – to the tune of $2,000. That advice was given before an official policy on CFL disposal was implemented, Maine officials told CNN, and users are no longer advised to call in the troops in hazmat suits when a bulb breaks.
“According to the Environmental Protection Agency,” CNN reports, “the average fluorescent light bulb contains about 4 milligrams of mercury, over 100 times less than found in an old mercury thermometer.”
CNN News article: The fluorescent light bulb boogeyman September 4, 2009Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in Controversial information, cfl, light bulb, compact fluorescent.
Tags: Technology of a light bulb, Energy saving, lightbulb, fluorescent, incandescent lightbulb, compact fluorescent light bulb, fluorescent lighting, cfl, spiral, spiral light bulb, energy saving light bulb, incandescent light bulb, fluorescent light bulb, light, compact fluorescent, light bulbs, light bulb, energy saving bulb, energy saving compact light bulb, energy saving lighting, incandescent lightbulb ban, green
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Gadzooks! The light bulb bogeyman is here and its only Sept! CNN weighs in CFLs and their percieved ”danger”
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — So now the government’s going to tell you what light bulb to buy, and it could be hazardous to your health.
That was the takeaway from some conservative and libertarian-minded folks when the energy bill of 2007 mandated more efficient lighting that would lead to a gradual phase out of many incandescent bulbs. Europe’s ban began this week and the new U.S. rules take effect in 2012.
The concept of the government dictating light bulbs seemed too juicy for some groups to pass up. The fact that the more efficient fluorescent bulbs contain mercury – a highly toxic element – gave actual grounds for objection.
But environmentalists point out that the increased electricity required to run a regular lightbulb from a powerplant produces a lot of mercury too.
Nonetheless, criticism of fluorescent bulbs was fast and furious.
“Everyone is being urged, cajoled and guilt-tripped into [replacing] Thomas Edison’s incandescents,” wrote the WorldNetDaily, a news Web site that bills itself as “a free press for a free people.” “However, there is no problem disposing of incandescents…you can throw them in the trash can and they won’t hurt the garbage collector…they won’t kill people working in the landfills.”
The poster-child for the anti-fluorescent bulbers is Brandy Bridges, a mother in Maine who broke a bulb in her daughter’s bedroom a couple years back.
Bridges, aware the bulbs contained mercury, called state officials, who came over, did tests, and told her to have the room cleaned by a hazardous waste crew – to the tune of over $2,000. Maine officials eventually came to her house and cut out the carpet.
This story has been widely circulated on the Internet, and sharp criticism of the government mandate continues today from email chain letters to rants on Capitol Hill.
The mandate, which doesn’t ban incandescent bulbs but requires much greater efficiency that will effectively take most of them off the shelf, phases in starting in 2012. One in Europe began earlier this week.
But much of the fear surrounding fluorescent light bulbs may be overblown.
When contacted about the Bridges case, Maine officials said the advice to get a professional hazardous waste cleaner and remove the carpet was given before a policy on fluorescents was fully developed. They no longer tell people to call a hazmat crew or remove rugs, unless the homeowner is particularly concerned.
Maine regulators, along with national environmental groups, consumer advocates and the federal government, all still recommend using the energy-saving bulbs.
When it comes to safety, they say the amount of mercury in a fluorescent bulb is so small it should not present a health risk. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average fluorescent light bulb contains about 4 milligrams of mercury, over 100 times less than found in an old mercury thermometer.
Consumer Reports just did extensive testing of the bulbs and found that many contain even less mercury – some had just 1 milligram.
“It’s not something to panic about,” said Celia Kuperszmid Lehrman, deputy home editor at Consumer Reports. “Tube fluorescents like we all have in our offices and schools have mercury too, and it’s not like they evacuate a school every time a bulb breaks.”
Still, the bulbs should be handled with care if broken. EPA recommends several steps including cleaning up the glass with cardboard or another item that can be disposed of after, opening the window, and putting the remnants in an outside garbage can.
If your town collects other household hazardous waste like batteries, paint or cleaning supplies, then you should dispose of the bulbs in the same manner. Home Depot and Ikea will recycle any old fluorescent bulbs, no mater where they were purchased.
Also, if the light is close to small children or pets that may easily knock it over, it’s probably best to use another type of bulb. Efficient, mercury-free incandescents like halogen lights, as well as LED lights will still be available after the new efficiency standards kick in.
The benefits of using fluorescent bulbs, experts say, far outweighs any mercury risk.
When it comes to mercury content, a fluorescent bulb ends up putting far less mercury into the environment compared to all the extra electricity required to run an inefficient bulb – four times less mercury, according to Noah Horowitz of the Natural Resources Defense Council.
If the whole country switched to fluorescents, says Horowitz, it would eliminate the need to build 30 new coal power plants and save as much electricity as used by all the homes in Texas.
Then there’s the cost savings. Consumer reports estimates that each incandescent replaced with a $1.50 fluorescent will save an individual $56 in electricity costs over the life of the bulb.
“You’d be hard pressed to find a better deal for your wallet or the environment,” said Horowitz.
Still, some people remain unconvinced.
For starters, many say if fluorescent bulbs were really better, people would buy them on their own.
For her part Bridges, contacted at her home in Maine, says she’ll never go back to fluorescent bulbs and has little faith in experts telling her what’s safe.
“Remember, at some point lead paint wasn’t a big deal either,” she said.
NY TIMES: Europe’s Ban on Old-Style Bulbs Begins September 3, 2009Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in Controversial information, Light bulbs in pop culture, cfl, compact fluorescent, incandescent light bulb.
Tags: Technology of a light bulb, Energy saving, lightbulb, fluorescent, incandescent lightbulb, compact fluorescent light bulb, fluorescent lighting, cfl, spiral, spiral light bulb, energy saving light bulb, incandescent light bulb, fluorescent light bulb, light, compact fluorescent, light bulb, energy saving bulb, energy saving compact light bulb, energy saving lighting, incandescent lightbulb ban, NY times light bulb ban
Gadzooks here is a great article on the Incandescent ban in Europe from the pages of the NY Times. Enjoy!
Europe’s Ban on Old-Style Bulbs Begins
By JAMES KANTER
Stores in the European Union will no longer be allowed to buy or import most incandescent frosted glass bulbs starting Tuesday.
Under the European Union rules, shops will no longer be allowed to buy or import most incandescent frosted glass bulbs starting Tuesday. Retailers can continue selling off their stock until they run out.
While some Europeans are eagerly jumping on the bandwagon, others are panicking and have been stockpiling the old-style bulbs for aesthetic or practical reasons. Others are resigned to the switch, if grudgingly.
“Why are we switching? Because we have to,” said Ralph Wennig, a 40-year-old photographer shopping on Monday at BHV, a Paris department store.
The new compact fluorescent lamps are billed as more economical in the long run because they use up to 80 percent less energy and do not burn out as quickly.
“But the downside is that the light isn’t as nice,” Mr. Wennig said, “and they are more expensive individually.”
One bulb can cost €10, or $14 — or a lot more, depending on type — whereas traditional incandescent bulbs cost about 70 cents each. But E.U. officials argued that the energy savings would cut average household electricity bills by up to €50 a year, amounting to about €5 billion annually. That would help buoy the economy if consumers spent their savings, they said.
At a briefing Monday in Brussels, however, they also were defending themselves against charges that they were depriving children of traditional fairground lights, and dealing with more serious questions about health hazards from the mercury in the new lamps.
Such arguments have already started to reverberate in the United States, where incandescent bulbs are due to be phased out starting in 2012.
Until then, the E.U. is providing the biggest staging ground for both the conversion as well as a debate over trade-offs created by environmental legislation. The issues include the loss of long-standing manufacturing industries, consumer choice and possible exacerbation of other environmental hazards.
The ban is one of a series of measures to support the E.U. goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2020. Everything from televisions to washing machines to tiny motors are being made more energy-efficient.
But the light bulb ban has proved singular in the way it has stirred fierce debate. The ubiquity of lighting and the way it can alter the aesthetics of an interior, even the experience of reading a book, makes it somehow more personal.
E.U. countries are not the first to ban incandescent light bulbs, but they are in the vanguard.
Australia has already introduced a ban and Cuba has entirely shifted to compact fluorescent bulbs, according to Andras Toth, an expert with the European Commission, the E.U. executive agency.
Consumer advocates in Europe have cautiously welcomed the measures but they also have pointed to drawbacks for consumers — especially those who have a special sensitivity to certain kinds of light or need old-style bulbs for health reasons.
“The blanket ban could spell misery for thousands of epilepsy and anxiety sufferers who are adversely affected by energy-saving bulbs,” said Martin Callanan, a European Parliament member.
He also warned that the new bulbs would not work in all types of fixtures nor with dimmer switches, and that they would give off a harsh light.
E.U. officials sought to reassure consumers that they still would have plenty of choice, and that the changes would be gradual. The clear 60-watt bulb, one of the most commonly used, would remain available until at least September 2011, and clear 40-watt bulbs until 2012.
National governments will be responsible for enforcing the rules.
However, the European Commission acknowledged that compact fluorescent lamps had to be handled with extra caution. If one breaks, people are advised to air out rooms and avoid using vacuum cleaners when cleaning up the mess to prevent exposure to mercury and other electronic parts in the bulbs, officials said. Instead, householders should remove the debris with a wet cloth while avoiding contact with skin. Used bulbs should be put in special collection receptacles, officials said.
Stephen Russell, the secretary general of ANEC, a group representing consumer interests in the development of product standards, said the commission had set the limit for mercury too high.
E.U. officials said that they would find ways to push the industry to reduce the amount of mercury to levels around 2 milligrams per bulb from the current level of 5 milligrams per bulb.
The effects of the ban are likely to be felt first at the checkout counter, where supplies of old-style bulbs soon could dry up entirely.
In Germany, consumers have been taking the precaution of stockpiling old-style light bulbs. Sales of incandescent bulbs have increased by 34 percent during the first half of this year, according to GfK, a consumer research organization.
“Some delay may happen before you get all possibilities at reasonable prices,” said André Brisaer, another European Commission official, who is helping to lead the phase-out.
Other consumers have complained that compact fluorescent bulbs do not last as long as incandescent bulbs when turned off and on like a standard bulb and that they take too long to illuminate fully. In those cases, commission officials have recommended that consumers use halogen bulbs, which brighten more quickly and are up to 45 percent more energy-efficient than incandescent bulbs.
But WWF, an environmental group, said standard halogen bulbs should also have been removed from the market.
“Getting rid of incandescents is a no-brainer, but halogens are nearly as wasteful,” said Mariangiola Fabbri, a senior energy policy officer for WWF.
As for fairgrounds, E.U. officials insisted that adequate replacements were available that would retain their soft-white traditional ambiance
European Union Begins Ban of Incandescent Light Bulbs September 1, 2009Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in Controversial information, cfl, compact fluorescent, incandescent light bulb.
Tags: cfl, compact fluorescent, compact fluorescent disposal, compact fluorescent light bulb, Energy saving, energy saving bulb, energy saving compact light bulb, energy saving light bulb, energy saving lighting, EU inandescent ban, EU incandescent light bulb ban, eu light bulb ban, fluorescent, fluorescent light bulb, green, incandescent light bulb, incandescent lightbulb, incandescent lightbulb ban, light, light bulb, light bulbs, lightbulb, spiral, spiral light bulb, Technology of a light bulb
Gadzooks! The EU has begun their ban the incandescent light bulb. Below is an article about the stir it is causing throughout Europe and even worldwide. Remember the EU is not the only one banning the incandescent. Heck the US is planning on a 2012 ban with some restrictions beginning as soon as 2010.
ABC’s Samantha Fields reports from London: Across Europe today, a mundane household object is causing quite a stir — the incandescent light bulb, which is now living on borrowed time. The European Union Tuesday began enforcing a ban on incandescent bulbs, in an effort to save energy and combat global warming. Under the ban, factories are no longer allowed to produce the frosted glass bulbs, and retailers are not allowed to import them, though they can continue selling ones they already have. Conceived by Thomas Edison, incandescent light bulbs were first produced commercially in 1879, and in the 130 years since, almost nothing about them has changed. Now, though, the traditional bulbs are being replaced by the more energy-efficient — and more expensive — compact fluorescent bulbs. While some Europeans are in support of the ban and the reasons behind it, many others are mourning the endangered bulbs, which are cheaper, and give off a warmer glow. Some people are even rushing to stockpile incandescent bulbs, which will remain on the shelves only until retailers sell out of their existing stock. In Germany, sales of incandescent bulbs were up 35 percent in the first half of the year. One objection to the ban is that compact fluorescent bulbs cost around $14 a piece, compared to less than a dollar each for a traditional bulb. But the initial cost of the bulbs, officials say, is offset by energy savings down the line, and by the fact that compact fluorescent bulbs tend to last longer than incandescent ones. By E.U. calculations, making the switch to compact fluorescent bulbs, which use 80 percent less energy, could save each household more than $70 a year on electricity bills. Even if people can be convinced on the financial front, though, many are up in arms over the ban for other reasons. People who suffer from a variety of conditions, such as epilepsy, anxiety and lupus, say that fluorescent light has an adverse affect on their health. Others are concerned about the levels of mercury found in the bulbs. Compact fluorescents also tend to take longer to illuminate, cannot be used with dimmer switches, and emit a harsher light. That, in many ways, is what it comes down to: quality of light. Though the European Union is not the first to ban incandescent bulbs — Australia and Cuba have also done so — its experience will serve as a preview for the U.S., which is planning to phase them out starting in 2012. As the battle against climate change moves increasingly front and center, proponents of the energy-guzzling incandescent bulb seem to be fighting a losing battle. Still, they’re unlikely to let Edison’s bulbs go out without a fight.
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Zoinks! Its me Dr Z! Pharoah of the fluorescent and lord of light!.. So now the President Obama is weighing in on light bulbs..The article below explains his commitment to us all getting better lighting.. But lightbulbs not sexy?? I don’t know what you see but they sure warm my cockles up!
Get Lit Stay Lit
President Obama on Monday announced new federal efforts to promote energy efficiency in the United States, through stricter standards on fluorescent and incandescent light and other measures.passed in the House on Friday.
“I know light bulbs might not seem sexy,” Mr. Obama said, “but this simple action holds enormous promise because 7 percent of all energy consumed in America is used to light our homes and our businesses.”
He framed the efforts as part of his goal to reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil through a variety of means, including through the cap and trade legislation that
“When we put aside the posturing and politics… a simple choice emerges,” Mr. Obama said. “We can remain the world’s leading importer of oil, or we can become the world’s leading exporter of clean energy. That’s our choice: Between a slow decline and renewed prosperity. Between the past and the future.”
The president said the new look at light bulbs is starting at the White House.
“Secretary Chu is already taking a look at our light bulbs,” he said.
Energy Secretary Steve Chu will also expand and accelerate the deployment of energy efficient technologies in new buildings, something that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act began, the president said.
He pointed to the state of California as an example of what stricter energy efficiency standards could achieve. In the late 1970′s, California enacted tougher energy policies, which the president said, helped create millions of jobs. Today, he said, Californians consume 40 percent less energy per person than the national average.
“One of the fastsest, easiest and cheapest ways to make our economy stronger and cleaner is to make our economy more energy efficient,” he said.
The American people, Mr. Obama said, “expect us to move forward right now” to create a clean energy economy.
To that end, the president praised the House for passing the climate change measure, which he said “will finally open the door to decreasing our dependence on foreign oil,” and he added, “create new business, new industries and millions of new jobs… all without placing untenable burdens on the American people or business.”
Mr. Obama said he is confident the Senate will also “choose to move this country forward.”
Tags: cfl, compact fluorescent, compact fluorescent light bulb, Energy saving, energy saving bulb, energy saving compact light bulb, energy saving light bulb, energy saving lighting, fluorescent, fluorescent light bulb, fluorescent lighting, fluorescent tube, incandescent light bulb, incandescent lightbulb, incandescent lightbulb ban, light, light bulb, light bulbs, lightbulb
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gadzooks! As much as I love Compact Fluorescents I must say I will be sad to see incandescents will be banned by 2012 and its looking like many people not only share that sentiment but have becoming quite grumpy about the change. The article below addresses some questions about the ban of incandescent bulbs .
Get Lit Stay Lit
Light-Bulb Revolt: Incandescent Fans Rise Up
From oven lights to spotlights, there’s a lot of worry about the coming phase-out
Light bulbs certainly can heat up controversy. After reading last month’s FAQ on the coming phase-out of today’s incandescent light bulbs, many readers wrote to defend the old bulbs or ask about the finer points of the switchover. Here are some of their comments and questions about the transition to more energy-efficient lighting, which Congress light in my oven that withstands the extreme temperatures there. Is a compact fluorescent light bulb safe for use in an oven? How about in the refrigerator or freezer?
No, those swirly, efficient CFL bulbs will be great for most light fixtures, but they can’t withstand extreme hot or cold. However, appliance lamps up to 40 watts are exempt from the new energy law and will not be phased out.
I have incandescent spotlights outside to light up my yard. Fluorescent lights are known to work poorly in the cold. Will CFLs work in subzero conditions?
Outdoor spotlights will still be available as halogen spot or halogen floodlights. These products are on the market today. Halogen bulbs also are becoming more efficient—wasting less energy as heat—than used to be the case.
I have lighting fixtures in my home designed to show the bulb as decoration—like candle, flame-shaped, or clear decorative spheres. Are all these fixtures going to be obsolete?
Decorative lamps with small candelabra bases are exempt from the phase-out up to 60 watts. Decorative lamps with standard or medium-screw bases are exempt up to 40 watts. Large globe lights used in bathroom vanities will still be available.
I have heard that we will not be able to use our existing light sockets with these new bulbs, nor use lampshades, and that we will have to have all light sockets in our homes replaced.
The manufacturers say that CFLs are substantially shorter and smaller than they were just a few years ago. While some light bulbs had difficulty fitting certain lampshades in the past, most CFLs will fit in almost all table lamps today. Consumers are already making the switch. The federal Energy Star program says sales of CFLs, which use 75 percent less energy and last up to 10 times as long as incandescents, doubled in 2007 and now account for 20 percent of the light bulb market.
Banning incandescent light bulbs entirely would be a big mistake. Seldom mentioned is the fact (proved in my home) that CFLs cause interference in TV pictures and AM radio.
Strange, but apparently this used to be true! Some CFLs created “radio frequency interference,” but this is rare today. Manufacturers tell me you can avoid the problem if you choose bulbs with the government’s Energy Star rating, indicating that they’ve met a standard set by the Federal Communications Commission. The FCC also requires CFL manufacturers to supply information (on or inside the package) that informs consumers what to do in the event that any interference is encountered (move your light bulb and your AM radio apart from each other).
As a matter of fact, many of the consumers who are worried about light quality and long life should also be sure they are using products that carry the Energy Star. The few CFLs on the market that don’t carry the star don’t meet the minimum government standards.
There are many locations where the extra cost of a fluorescent will never be repaid, such as little-used closets and attics.
The payback period may indeed be so slow as to be imperceptible in these locations. At least you won’t have to crawl up there and replace those bulbs too often. CFLs should last a long time.
Like a lot of problems, there is no “silver bullet” to solve every problem. The idea of banningincandescent bulbs needs to be re-evaluated to produce a more sensible approach.
Ah, but the United States isn’t really banning incandescent bulbs, as Australia recently did. All the major manufacturers—including General Electric, Osram Sylvania, and Philips—emphasize that, very much at their urging, Congress instead set new standards for greater efficiency in lighting. It doesn’t matter what technology the light bulb makers use to get to reach the goals. The practical effect, indeed, will be to phase out most of the incandescent bulbs that we know. But in the coming years, you most likely will see manufacturers come out with next-generation, efficient incandescent bulbs. These may end up being a transitional technology that will not meet the standards in the later years of the phase-out, when light-emitting diodes become more economical, but manufacturers are confident these new standards are workable.
Sure, it’s easy (and fun) to rail against Congress. But the bright side of all those loopholes and compromises is that you will still be able to light your oven, freezer, outdoor walkway, and candelabra fixture with little upheaval, while saving kilowatts with more modern lighting in the rest of your home.
A ‘light bulb’ moment for people with dementia May 13, 2009Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in Controversial information, light bulb, List Article.
Tags: age and eyesight, blue light, fluorescent, fluorescent light bulb, fluorescent lighting, fluorescent tube, light and ageing, light therapy, Technology of a light bulb, treatments for dementia
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Zoinks! It’s me Dr. Z. Its seems that there new breakthoughs constantly happening in the world of lighting everyday! Check this exciting new article on the possibility that light can be a treatment for dementia!
A ‘light bulb’ moment for people with dementia
CLEVELAND Change the lighting; improve your health. It’s a strategy researchers from Case Western Reserve University’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing and the School of Medicine, the Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center at the Louis Stokes Cleveland Veterans Affairs Medical Center (GRECC), Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Lighting Research Center and GE Consumer & Industrial have begun to test in a long-term care facility where daylight, which has proven health benefits, is not readily available.
The researchers removed some standard fluorescent lighting and installed new blue-white lamp prototypes developed by GE scientists at the company’s Nela Park campus.
Research team members hypothesize that periods of blue light, like daylight, can help regulate the sleep-wake rhythm, which is a behavioral pattern linked to the 24-hour biochemical circadian cycle of the hormone melatonin. Depending on the level of the hormone, people are awake or sleepy.
The researchers want to regulate the sleep-wake cycle by regulating the amount of exposure to blue-white (wakefulness) and yellow-white (sleepiness) light. By increasing exposure to blue-white light during the day and yellow-white light in the evening, researchers hope to help patients regulate their sleep-wake cycles so that they are more awake during the day and more asleep at night.
Patricia Higgins, associate professor at the Bolton School of Nursing and one of the lead investigators, says the project may prove to be especially beneficial for people suffering from dementia.
In a recently conducted pilot study with five male patients, each suffering from dementia and living in a long-term care facility, researchers installed the blue-white lights in an activities room where most residents gathered for meals and daytime activities.
“We wanted to see whether lighting could affect the participants’ sleep-wake rhythms,” says Higgins. “While the group was small, the results show promise in raising activity levels during daytime hours and increasing sleep at nighttime.”
The researchers plan a larger study with residents with dementia at two Northeast Ohio long-term care facilities. The study will include men and women to see if light impacts the genders differently. An unexpected side effect of the lighting is that once adjusted to the blue-white light, most employees reported that they liked the new lighting conditions.
For a number of decades it has been known that light affects how people feel. Those particularly sensitive to changes in light have benefited from a boost in the brightness of light sources. The new lighting used in the test changes the color without overpowering individuals with brightness, according to the researchers.
“Why waste light if you can tune it to the right color and maximize the amount of useful light,” says Mariana Figueiro, assistant professor at Rensselaer and program director at Rensselaer’s Lighting Research Center.”Light is a good stimulus for the circadian system, which regulates your sleep-wake cycles,” says Thomas Hornick, associate director at the GRECC at the Veterans Administration Hospital and associate professor at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. He says it is known that certain drugs do better when given at the appropriate time in the circadian cycle.
As a safe, non-pharmacological intervention, researchers also hope to apply information from the study to changing the lighting in hospitals where patients may have a speedier recovery or improved quality of life with a good night’s rest.
“We’re innovators at heart,” says Mark Duffy, engineering and technology systems manager, GE Consumer & Industrial. “Our goal entering this collaboration was to apply the passion and inventiveness, which we bring to every customer need or application, to a project that has implications for society at large. We’re proud to be part of this effort.”
If changing the lighting works to improve health, the researchers plan to take what would be a natural next step: trying to influence public policy to include new lighting standards for healthcare facilities.
Visit http://www.case.edu/think/breakingnews/Lightbulb.html for further information.
To view and download broadcast ready clip, visit https://www.yousendit.com/transfer.php?action=batch_download&send_id=684396834&email=c48cf48b16188976f1ff26fc7913442a. (The order of appearance is Patricia Higgins, associate professor of nursing, Case Western Reserve University; Mark Duffy, engineering and technology systems manager, GE Consumer & Industrial; and William W Beers, lead design engineer, GE Consumer & Industrial.)
Case Western Reserve University is among the nation’s leading research institutions. Founded in 1826 and shaped by the unique merger of the Case Institute of Technology and Western Reserve University, Case Western Reserve is distinguished by its strengths in education, research, service, and experiential learning. Located in Cleveland, Case Western Reserve offers nationally recognized programs in the Arts and Sciences, Dental Medicine, Engineering, Law, Management, Medicine, Nursing, and Social Work. http://www.case.edu.
GE Consumer & Industrial spans the globe as an industry leader in major appliances, lighting and integrated industrial equipment, systems and services. Providing solutions for commercial, industrial and residential use in more than 100 countries, GE Consumer & Industrial uses innovative technologies and ecomaginationSM, a GE initiative to aggressively bring to market new technologies that help customers and consumers meet pressing environmental challenges, to deliver comfort, convenience and electrical protection and control. General Electric (NYSE: GE), imagination at work, sells products under the Monogram, Profile, GE, Hotpoint, SmartWater, Reveal and Energy Smart consumer brands, and Entellisys, Tetra, Vio and Immersion commercial brands. For more information, consumers may visit www.ge.com.
The Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center proudly serves 100,000 veterans throughout northeastern Ohio each year in its two medical centers and thirteen community-based outpatient clinics. The Cleveland VA is one of the most cost effective of the VA’s large teaching hospitals and leads the VA with seven Clinical Centers of Excellence in Open Heart Surgery, Substance Abuse, Care of the Seriously Mentally Ill, Medical Care of the Homeless, Domiciliary, Geriatric Evaluation and Management, and Spinal Cord Injury/Dysfunction Care. The Cleveland VA also leads the VA with two research centers of excellence. The Cleveland VA is fully accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations and the first VA to receive Joint Commission Disease Specific Certification for Inpatient Diabetes.
The Lighting Research Center (LRC) is part of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute of Troy, N.Y., and is the leading university-based research center devoted to lighting. The LRC offers the world’s premier graduate education in lighting, including one- and two-year master’s programs and a Ph.D. program. Since 1988 the LRC has built an international reputation as a reliable source for objective information about lighting technologies, applications, and products. The LRC also provides training programs for government agencies, utilities, contractors, lighting designers, and other lighting professionals. For more information, visit www.lrc.rpi.edu.