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The Lighting Engineer Who Thought Outside the Box June 25, 2009

Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in cfl, light bulb, Light Fixtures, Weird Bulb News.
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Dr. Yoon and two of his "girlfriends"

Dr. Yoon and two of his "girlfriends"

Zoinks! Its me Dr. Z, Pharoah of the Fluorescent and Lord of Light! Here is a great article on Dr. Yoon Jae-dong who developed a reflective socket for recessed lighting, which offering more light for less power. Dr Yoon is  a lot like me. In his words :in . “These days, all I ever look at are light bulbs wherever I go,” Yoon says. “It’s as if they are my girlfriends.” Zoinks ! and Mr. Y says I’m a nerd!

listen learn and read on

Dr. Z




Dr. Yoon Jae-dong of JCI Display has developed a reflective socket for recessed lighting, a so-called troffer, that may look like plastic but is greatly more effective than the standard product, thus offering more light for less power.

Dr. Yoon Jae-dong of JCI Display

“Low-carbon, green growth is the focus of attention these days, and it makes me happy to have developed a method of radically lowering electricity use and carbon dioxide emissions simply by replacing troffers,” Yoon says. He cited 236 housing units in an apartment complex in Cheongju. “In three rooms at each of those apartments, we removed one 36 W bulb, eliminating a total of 708 bulbs. If you consider each of those bulbs being used five hours a day, we estimate around 46,000 KW of electricity saved each year and a reduction of 20,800 kg of carbon dioxide emissions.” 

Based on this estimate, removing three light bulbs in 6.88 million households across Korea would end up saving around W1.35 million MW of electricity — the equivalent of saving 1.3 times the amount of electricity generated by the Seoul Thermal Power Plant, which produced around 900,000 MW in 2008. That would also lead to a 610,000 ton reduction in carbon dioxide emissions. Adding commercial lighting, the amount of electricity saved would be astronomical, Yoon says.

For a long time, Yoon questioned the traditional belief that turning off the lights saves electricity. Working as a researcher for LG Electronics, he became curious about the energy-saving effects of reflecting the light that seeps out from the backs of lamps. He realized that all of the sheets used to reflect backlight in LG’s LCD TVs were made in Japan and felt it would be useful to develop Korean-made versions and use them to reflect light from light bulbs.

In June 2006, Yoon went to the University of Toronto in Canada to take a post-doc program, and there he found the answer to his quest in polypropylene, a cheap and environmentally friendly material. He returned to Korea in 2007, opened his own company and began developing prototypes. He experimented 500 times over the course of a year and was eventually able to develop a PP sheet with a 99 percent reflection rate called “Reflect All.” He received a patent for that product in Korea in March last year and set up mass production facilities after making modifications. He recently applied for patents in eight countries, including the United States and Japan. “These days, all I ever look at are light bulbs wherever I go,” Yoon says. “It’s as if they are my girlfriends.”


‘Lightbulb’ molecule has a bright future June 23, 2009

Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in LED Lights, light bulb, List Article.
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The discovery of the light bulb particle

The discovery of the light bulb particle

Gadzooks! Its me Dr.Z here to spread the gospel of good lighting. LEDs are in the news again. Its seems the “lightbulb” molecule may have been discovered and could possibly revolutionize the lighting industry.

Listen Learn Read ON

Dr. Z




A single molecule that reliably emits white light could speed the development of low-energy LEDs for the next generation of light sources and displays, say chemists. Energy-efficient LEDs are widely tipped to become the predominant lighting source of the next decade and beyond, replacing the fast-disappearing incandescent bulb, as well as the compact fluorescent lights that are replacing them. Tipped to become the standard in this area are organic LEDs – thin films made from organic polymers that can be coated onto large areas at low cost. But generating white light from OLEDs is difficult as organic compounds within the films generate light only at very specific colours. Making white involves mixing two or more compounds to create a white light balance, and that drives up the price. Jekyll and Hyde Soo-Young Park at Seoul National University, South Korea, and colleagues at the University of Valencia in Spain, have created a molecule able to behave like two separate light-producing molecules. When stimulated with a voltage it produces orange and blue light that mix to create white. Previous attempts using the same basic concept involved linking together two separate molecules into one. But, because energy is able to flow between the two molecular sub-units, one unit typically emits more light than the other, resulting in an unwanted tint. The new molecule does not suffer that problem, and only contains one light-emitting chemical group. When connected to a voltage, this group switches to a high-energy form that emits blue light as it reverts to its original state. Roughly half the time, though, the high-energy form picks up extra oxygen and hydrogen atoms, becoming a short-lived form that produces orange light before reverting to the original state. A large population of the molecules reliably produces equal quantities of orange and blue light that mix to produce an even white. Efficiency boost “This allows us to create white emission in much the same way as creating white light from independent [lights],” says Park, potentially saving money and increasing efficiency. “The science is excellent and very impressive,” says Colin Humphreys who works on LEDs at the University of Cambridge in the UK. But, he adds, it needs an efficiency boost before it can be used in commercial lighting and displays. Currently, the molecule converts electrons into photons at least 30 times less efficiently than commercial LEDs. Park responds that the study was more about proof of principle and that the efficiency figures will rise as the method is optimised.

LED there be light part II. Miami Herald LED article June 22, 2009

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Are LEDs the light of the future?

Are LEDs the light of the future?

Zoinks! Its me Dr. Z, pharoah of the fluorescent and loony for light bulbs. Here is a great article just published in the Miami Herald that discusses some of the merits of LED lighting. I have posted some articles like this in the past but this one brings up some nice points as to what LED lighting means to you and me. Listen Learn and Read On!

Dr. Z





Q: How many LED engineers does it take to change a light bulb?

A: Why on Earth would you ever need to change a light bulb?

While LED (light-emitting diode) costs are still high, this type of lighting is extremely long-lasting. And as prices come down, its efficiency could lead to huge energy savings.

The first consumer LED products lit up in the 1970s, with red light numbers on pocket calculators and push-button displays on big, geeky Pulsar watches. Then came those centered, high-mounted brake lights in the rear windows of cars. Now LEDs are found in everything from traffic lights to operating rooms to greenhouses.

An LED is a device that produces light when an electrical current flows through it. The color it emits depends on the materials used to make the diode.

“It won’t be long before LED lighting technology has a space on your desk, has a space on your ceiling, certainly has a space on your car,” says Russell Dupuis, an electro-optics professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dupuis was awarded the 2002 National Medal of Technology for his work on LEDs.

“Most cars today have a whole lot of LED, certainly the instrument cluster,” he says.

And some cities are also investing in LED for their roads. Dupuis says LED traffic signals would pay for themselves in about three months because of energy savings. And how long do they last? “Until somebody knocks the pole down!” he laughs.

Here are some numbers from the U.S. Department of Energy comparing lifetimes of LEDs to traditional lighting:

– Incandescent bulbs (750-2,000 hours): These bulbs haven’t changed much in 120-plus years; they give off 80-percent heat and only 20-percent light.

– Compact fluorescent bulbs (8,000-10,000 hours): CFLs are more efficient than incandescent, but do contain small amounts of mercury.

– High-power white LEDs (35,000-50,000 hours): The Department of Energy estimates a quarter of the electricity in the United States is used for lighting, costing $50 billion per year. The agency says new technology could reduce lighting energy use by 50 percent.

For some big companies, the transition already makes sense. “Walmart decided to replace the lighting in all of its refrigerated cases with LED lights,” Dupuis says. “Every store is going to save enough in six months to pay for this change.”

There’s also a niche for special lighting needs. Some surgical teams are using LED headlamps and operating-room lighting. LEDs also light up the words of the Constitution and Declaration of Independence at the Jefferson Memorial. And at the British Museum they illuminate the Beatles’ “Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” uniforms so the fabric doesn’t decay.

OLEDs, or organic light-emitting diodes, have other intriguing potential. They can be created on paper-thin plastics, and made into wallpaper, window blinds, even clothing.

But it will be several years before consumers can pick up a pack of LEDs at the hardware store. “Designing lights with LED has inherent challenges,” says Michelle Murray, a spokeswoman for LED lighting manufacturer Cree Inc.

Those challenges prompted the Department of Energy to launch the L-Prize, a competition offering millions in cash prizes for the creation of a “high-quality, high-efficiency solid-state lighting products to replace the common light bulb.”

The Department of Energy admits major consumer confusion when it first started promoting the efficiency of compact fluorescent lights. It says the United States cannot afford to squander the enormous energy-saving potential of LEDs, so it wants to make sure the products are ready for prime time when they do hit the market.

The Department of Energy is setting 2012 as a target for large-volume production and replacement of incandescent lighting.


Blanketing Doesn’t Keep Horses from Growing Winter Coats; But Lighting Can! June 17, 2009

Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in Fluorescent light, List Article.
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Gadzooks! Its me Dr Z! Here is a great article for you horse lovers out there. The article is about using fluorescent lighting to keep a horse’s coat short (without clipping). Horses can turn into real fuzzballs in the winter and if you are show horse thats going to effect your stage time. ZOinks!

Dr. Z




Icelandic Horse (www.wikimedia.org) 

Contrary to what many people think, horses don’t grow winter coats because temperatures drop. Rather, it is a response to the length of the day. As days get shorter, horses’ coats get longer. 

This means that some of the “traditional” methods of trying to reduce a horse’s winter coat, such as early blanketing or keeping them in a heated a barn, actually have no effect.

To keep a horse’s coat short (without clipping) many show barns use lighting to artificially lengthen the day and “fool” the horse into not growing a winter coat.

Researchers at Texas A&M University’s Department of Equine Scientists tested the theory that exposing horses to 16 hours of “daylight” (the length of the day on the summer solstice) to find out if it would retard fall hair growth or cause early shedding. The experiment was conducted on 16 horses (yearlings and two year olds) that were randomly assigned to normal or extended day length groups.

The project started October 1 when the extended day length (ED) group started receiving 16 hours of day light per day and the non-extended day length (NED) groups received natural day light only.  All horses were housed in the same non-heated barn and none of the horses were blanketed throughout the project. 

On day 1 the hair on a 1×2 inch square, under the mane, was clipped then shaved to skin level. Hair from these areas was reclipped on days 28 and 56 and measured for growth.  

After 28 days, the two groups showed approximately equal growth. But from there, the differences became obvious. On the last day of the experiment, December 6th, the hair on the NED group was nearly three times longer than the hair on the ED group.

Surprisingly, you don’t need special lamps to achieve this effect: you can use standard incandescent or fluorescent lights placed over, or close to, a horse’s stall. Horses have shown a response with as little as 3 foot candles of light (one foot candle is the amount of light that a birthday cake candle generates from one foot away), but 10 foot candles of light is the standard recommendation. Essentially, if you can read a newspaper from any location in the stall, you have enough light. 

To achieve the effect, horses need to receive 16 continuous hours of light (natural and artificial) and 8 hours of darkness. 24 hours of continuous light doesn’t do the trick; there needs to be a period of darkness. Most barn owners use timers to achieve the desired amount of light.

The other effect of keeping horses under lights is that mares will continue to come into season.

This one is off the weirdo meter! Japanese Fluorescent Fight in a Ring Match. June 16, 2009

Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in Light bulbs in pop culture, Weird Bulb News.
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Zoinks! Two fighters! Alot of fluorescent tubes..and gulp* blood. This video is not for the faint of heart.. Evidentally this is really popular in Japan. From the video description:

From Hardcore Ladies
May 4, 2008

WARNING: not for the weak of heart

anyway, the badass ‘fro returns with one of the specialty matches she is currently known for: the fluorescent tubes match. being a freelance wrestler, she had stints at Dai Nihon Puroresu (or Big Japan Pro Wrestling) as a participant in several intergender light tube matches. this is her latest intergender match but it’s not under BJPW this time around slugging it out against yuko miyamoto.

you mess with the ‘fro, get ready to go!

Gadzooks! Whats next? Boxing with Halogens? Karate with LEDs? The mind boggles!
Dr. Z

Video-A Light Bulb Moment for People with Dementia June 15, 2009

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Zoinks! Here is a great video on what may be a giant breakthrough for the treatment of dementia! Using light!

Dr. Z


Magazine finds eco-bulbs as light as old-style June 11, 2009

Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in cfl, compact fluorescent, light bulb, List Article.
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spiral lights are everywhere!

spiral lights are everywhere!

Gadzooks! a great article from New Zealand.

Dr. Z


Energy saving eco-bulbs produce at least as much light as old-style bulbs, but you get what you pay for, according to Consumer magazine.

Consumer tested 17 eco-bulbs, including two dimmable bulbs, for brightness and long life, by comparing them with a standard 100W incandescent light bulb and turning them each on and off 6454 times.

It found that most eco-bulbs, or compact fluorescents, produced as much light as the old-style incandescent bulbs and good eco-bulbs produced substantially more.

A good quality eco-bulb would last well despite being turned off and on a lot. In most cases, major brand eco-bulbs lasted longer than cheaper brands.

Old-style incandescent bulbs turn just 5 per cent of electricity into light and the rest into heat, while the new eco bulbs turn about 80 per cent of electricity into light.

Spiral shapes were the best performers of the eco-bulbs, which ranged between 18W and 23W. They ranged in price from $2.93 to $25.92 each.



The bulbs produced more light than a standard 100W incandescent bulbs and none failed the “long life” switching test.

Two 60W halogen energy saver bulbs were also tested. They produced only about 75 per cent of the light output of a standard 60W bulb.

I’m a little light bulb.. Compact Fluorescent Green Song June 10, 2009

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Dr. Z sings a song. “I’m a little light bulb” for his Mom. Keyboards and drum machine supplied by Kraftwerk influenced musician Hans Wagner (who is perhaps best known for his work with Jazzhorse and Gnome Machine) Dr. Z will be playing at select nightclub in Las Vegas in between the Koko’s Burlesque and John Wackers’ “Elvis Ate My Sandwich” revue, which explores the culinary vision of the king of rock n roll. Fried Peanut Butter and Banana sandwiches anyone?
Get Lit Stay Lit


ZOinks! Its a new Dr. Z video. Y and Z Lighthouse Rock Band June 10, 2009

Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in cfl, compact fluorescent, LED Lights, light bulb, Light bulbs in pop culture.
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Join Dr. Z and Mr. Y as the rock out on the Fred Smullivan Variety show. Light bulb guitar! Light Bulb Drums! Strange audience members. Rabbit faced groupies and light bulbs! Light bulbs! Light BULBS!
ZBULBS. The Lighthouse Band will rock your socks off!

Can Laser Treatment Rejuvenate the Incandescent Bulb?- more info on Laser Light Bulbs! June 9, 2009

Posted by Dr. Z Bulbs in light bulb, List Article, Theory for argument sake., Weird Bulb News.
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Zoinks! Its me Dr Z! The Light bulb lovin man. Lasers and Light Bulbs are two great tastes that evidentally taste great together. Could this be the revolution in lighting? Methinks LEDS are in for some serious competion if this pans out.
Dr. Z
Set Your Light Bulbs on Stun!

Set Your Light Bulbs on Stun!


light bulbThe battle of the light bulb may not be quite over. While traditional incandescents will soon be phased out in the United States and abroad, researchers are plugging away to create more efficient versions that comply with looming new standards — while also providing an alternative for consumers who find compact fluorescents objectionable [The New York Times, blog]. In one new study, researchers have demonstrated how an incandescent bulb can be modified to give out much more light without requiring more power.

Lead researcher Chunlei Guo and his colleagues were experimenting with the effect of ultrafast laser pulses on metals when they noticed that pulses lasting only a few femtoseconds–quadrillionths of a second–could fundamentally change the molecular arrangement of metals without melting them [ScienceNOW Daily News]. The laser blasts caused the metal to turn black, which boosted its ability to absorb light. Because the law of thermal radiation state that materials that can absorb a great deal of energy will also emit large amounts of energy, the researchers decided to see if their laser treatment would boost the light output of the metal filament in an ordinary light bulb.

They fired a femtosecond laser beam through the glass of an off-the-shelf incandescent bulb. As expected, the lightning-fast beam rearranged the molecules of the bulb’s tungsten filament, turning it dark black. But then, when the researchers turned the bulb on, the part treated with the laser shone considerably brighter than the rest of the filament [ScienceNOW Daily News]. When they gave an entire filament the laser treatment, an altered 60-watt light bulb glowed as brightly as a 100-watt bulb, but still used its normal amount of electricity.

The findings, which will be published in the next issue of Physical Review Letters, may not be ready for commercialization just yet, but Guo believes it would not be difficult for bulb companies to add a tungsten blackening step to the manufacturing process. “The implementation should be fairly straightforward,” he said [The New York Times, blog]. However, compact-fluorescent bulbs and light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs are already on the market, and research is continuing on how to make those technologies cheaper, more pleasing to the eye, and still more efficient, so the laser treatment may not be enough to give new life to the old-fashioned light bulb.