Independence LED Lighting, a US manufacturer of commercial light-emitting diode (LED) lighting, announced that according to US Department of Energy (DOE) report data, Independence LED tubes are 15% more efficient in lumens per watt (lm/W) than the average from the field of more than 30 LED manufacturers.
In the report, the DOE found that LEDs are more efficient than ever. The CALiPER Summary Report 21: Linear (T8) LED Lamps states in its conclusion: “Compared to previous CALiPER testing of the same product type, there have been notable performance gains, with the efficacy of many lamps now equivalent to or exceeding that of fluorescent lamps.”
The 2014 report indicates that, based on their design, Independence LED tubes are potentially safer than competitive products. Typical fluorescent fixtures bring line voltage into the fixture via alternating current (AC) and then convert it through the ballast to lower-voltage direct current (DC). Internal driver LED tubes override the ballast, creating a potential safety issue. As the DOE says in its March 2013 CALiPER Exploratory Study: Recessed Troffer Lighting: “There is ongoing concern in the lighting industry over the safety of fluorescent troffers when they are converted using LED T8 lamps or retrofit kits.” The 2014 CALiPER Report addressed this safety concern directly, specifically citing the Independence LED product as one of the safer options.
De-lamping is becoming front and centre and the 2014 DOE Report Conclusion says, “The other alternative is to shift away from using LED products as one-for-one replacements to upgrade existing luminaires.” The 29W Independence LED tube tested by the DOE is most often used to replace two fluorescent tubes or in multi-tube high bay fixtures, while the one-to-one replacement for 32W fluorescent tubes is the Independence LED 12W or 16W solution.
Return on Investment (ROI) drives retrofits. The cost of four imported LED tubes for a common 2-foot × 4-foot troffer-style fixture is often more expensive than a pair of American-made Independence LED tubes that in many cases provide the same fixture lighting output. With typical 4-foot T8 32W fluorescent tubes each pair adds up to 64W and the Independence LED 29W or 22W solution can yield energy savings between 54% and 65%, respectively.