LED - The lighting revolution
Unlike incandescent lamps, the LED or Light-Emitting Diode does not generate light from thermal radiation but by converting electric energy into light on the basis of a semiconductor diode. Depending on the material and the operating conditions, the average service life of an LED amounts to 50,000 hours, which corresponds to almost 46 years if used for three hours a day. LEDs have a considerably greater luminous efficacy (between 40 and 100 lm/W) than incandescent lamps and halogen lamps. At 100 lm/W, the latest generation of LEDs is as efficient as fluorescent lamps. LEDs are tiny, robust and do not emit infrared or UV radiation. They are therefore especially useful for illuminating heat-sensitive or UV-sensitive objects, such as chocolate or valuable artwork.
White LEDs currently have a colour rendering index of Ra=80, which is equivalent to fluorescent lamps or energy saving lamps. Coloured RGB (red, green and blue) LEDs can be used to produce impressive effects. With up to 16 million colour combinations, an amazing array of possible atmospheric lighting effects for objects, walls and even entire rooms is created, from warm and pleasant light to fresh and stimulating right through to cool and icy, and everything in between.
Their small size makes LEDs ideal for installation in areas where traditional lamps simply would not fit, such as furniture, stairways, even paving stones. To sum up, their high energy efficiency, compact size and versatile colour combinations make LEDs the ideal choice for a wide range of applications at home as well as in commercial areas.
LED technology is increasingly becoming less expensive and more efficient, meaning that LEDs look set to play an even greater role in mood lighting, zone lighting and ambient lighting in the coming years.