Starting in 2014, incandescent bulbs will no longer be sold in America. While compact fluorescents certainly have an early lead in the race to replace the bulb, flat-fluorescent lamp maker Lumiette, might have have a claim to a big hunk of the market as well.
These new bulbs were actually designed to be the backlight in LCD televisions, but by the time they'd finished their factory, the market for 32 inch backlights had dropped away. So, what do you do with a factory that produces ultra-efficient, easily dimmable lamps for televisions that television manufacturers don't want.
Make it into a lightbulb company, of course!
They're even more efficient than regular fluorescents, and last far longer. The lamp's electrode is actually outside of the bulb, so it doesn't degrade as quickly. This also allows the lamp to be extremely thin (just a few millimeters) and easy to dim (unlike CFLs...if you've noticed.)
The big problem, however, is the form factor. You're not going to be plugging these into your Edison lamp sockets. They'll be great for replacing traditional fluorescent fixtures, of course. But if you want to get them in your home, you're going to have to do it as part of a larger re-model.
They also still contain the mercury that makes CFLs a little less desirable for us EcoGeeks, but the simple fact that they last up to 60,000 hours (more than five times longer than today's fluorescents) will at least make good use of the mercury.
And the final advantage they have over OLEDs and LEDs is that the factory that produces them is already built. We don't have to wait to scale up the technology...it's already been done.
Lumiette already has a contract to build a 25 foot wall of light for an unknown buyer, and it will initially focus on commercial buyers and new construction, a common course for new technologies. Current homeowners will have to wait until they can convince lamp-makers to come up with fixtures to fit the Lumiette bulbs.
written by Hank, December 30, 2008
written by Ian Garrett, December 31, 2008
written by Rich Mintz, January 24, 2009
written by Green Squid, August 05, 2009
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