Philips LED Light Wins U.S. Department of Energy's $10m 'Lighting Prize'

Photo: Philips

I, for one, welcome our new LED overlords

It looks like the Philips AmbientLED that I reviewed a few months ago has won the U.S. Department of Energy's Lighting Prize (modeled on the original X-Prize). The goal was to help "transform lighting technology" by making it more efficient. To win, the Philips LED had to go through some pretty sophisticated tests (see the video below) to make sure the light quality was good and that it was durable.

Launched in 2008, DOE's first L Prize category targets the 60-watt bulb because it is one of the most widely used types of light bulbs by consumers, representing roughly half of the domestic incandescent light bulb market. Every year it is estimated that more than 425 million 60-watt incandescent light bulbs are sold in the United States alone. The L Prize challenge sets the goal for the winning product's energy performance extremely high. The energy-saving replacement for 60-watt conventional bulbs must use less than 10 watts of power, providing an energy savings of 83 percent. If every 60-watt incandescent bulb in the U.S. was replaced with the 10-watt L Prize winner, the nation would save about 35 terawatt-hours of electricity or $3.9 billion in one year and avoid 20 million metric tons of carbon emissions. That's enough electricity to power the lights of nearly 18 million U.S. households, or nearly triple the annual electricity consumption in Washington, D.C.

Below are photos of the Philips AmbientLED 12.5-watt, a commercially available LED lightbulb that I reviewed recently (Update: I also reviewed the 17W LED model). It's not the same as the L-Prize winner, but it's the closest thing you can buy right now.

This is the Philips AmbientLED 12.5-watt, a similar LED light bulb to the L-Prize winner. Photo: Michael Graham Richard

This is the Philips AmbientLED 12.5-watt, a similar LED light bulb to the L-Prize winner. Photo: Michael Graham Richard

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See also: Philips AmbientLED 17 Watts LED Lightbulb (Product Review)

Via DOE. See also: GE Will Expand LED Bulb Lineup with 60W, 75W and 100W Replacements

LED Light Bulb Reviews
GE 'Energy Smart' 9W LED Lightbulb (Product Review)
Qnuru 6.4W and 9.2W LED Lightbulbs (Product Review)
FIRST Green 'e-Watt Saver' 7W LED Lightbulb (Product Review)
Philips AmbientLED 12.5 Watts LED Lightbulb (Product Review)

Tags: Energy Efficiency | LEDs


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