Lighting Breakthrough: New GE LED module simplifies lighting, makes luminaires upgradeable and serviceable

Simple clockwise twist mates the LED module to the fixture housing for necessary thermal, electrical and mechanical connectivity; GE commercializing through luminaire manufacturers

General lighting with energy efficient long–lasting LEDs in directional applications such as recessed downlights, tracks, pendants and sconces becomes as easy as changing a standard light bulb early next year. A new technology “twist” from GE Consumer & Industrial—a small puck–shaped LED module that gives lighting designers and end–users the ability to easily upgrade LED lighting as technology advances—addresses the inflexibility of integrated LED luminaires now used in commercial and consumer settings.

The new module‘s one–of–a–kind ease of installation, a clockwise twist motion, contrasts sharply with current integrated LED luminaires and LED modules that are not easily replaceable because they require mechanical fasteners to couple the LED package to a heat sink, and a plug to make the electrical connection. With the new GE offering, the necessary thermal and electrical connections are made with a simple twist of the module into its socket.

“It is as easy as changing a light bulb,” says Steven J. Briggs, vice president of marketing and global product management with GE Consumer & Industrial‘s LED business, Lumination, LLC. “Leading lighting designers and architects are on the record with concerns about integrated LED fixture upgradeability and serviceability. Some won‘t specify an integrated LED fixture. This is GE‘s answer. It‘s future–proof and market–ready.”

Lumination purchased the next–generation LED module technology from Journée Lighting, Inc, a California–based LED fixture designer and manufacturer. “In the hands of GE, we believe this consumer–friendly modular LED technology will rapidly accelerate the wide–spread adoption of LED lighting as a preferred light source across the world,” says Clayton Alexander, CEO of Journée Lighting.

GE‘s replaceable LED module allows fixture makers to remain current with the latest LED performance in a GE–reliable, best-in-class solution. “Our fixture customers want to focus their efforts on total system performance,” adds Briggs.

Leaders of GE Consumer & Industrial in the U.S. and Europe are already presenting the new module to luminaire manufacturers, distributors, retailers and the lighting design community. “Early customer feedback has been a combination of relief and excitement,” notes Andy Davies, senior LED product manager for GE‘s operation in Europe. “GE customers around the world appreciate that we‘ve knocked down the hurdle of inflexibility that‘s inherent with integrated LED luminaires.”

The new fully dimmable GE brand LED module will debut in Journée Lighting‘s award–winning Azara™ and Pentas™ track light luminaires in early 2010. In addition, GE is making the module available as a component for various LED luminaire manufacturers.

One lighting luminaire can support a variety of different LED modules with varying color temperatures, beam angles and light levels. An added level of lighting design flexibility is enabled with the LED module‘s wattage–adjust switch that gives end–users three different light level/wattage options.

Modular platforms versus integrated platforms
LED technology advancements are coming faster than ever. Leading LED chip manufacturers seem to announce improvements in efficacy every few months. With the new GE LED module, end–users get LED lighting that over its life can be considered state–of–the–art in quality, efficiency and control. Because critical components such as the LED driver circuitry and chip are contained within an easily replaceable module, a component failure doesn‘t require the costly replacement of the entire fixture.

GE is one of the world‘s largest LED systems companies. Its expansive installed base of white LED systems in the United States includes Walmart‘s refrigerated display case lighting installation, the world‘s biggest white–LEDs–replacing–fluorescent lighting retrofit in a retail display setting. Globally, GE has sold over 600,000 LED refrigerated display case lights, over 6 million LED traffic signals and over 20 million linear feet of Tetra® LED lighting systems for use in signage and architectural applications. Over 50 percent of GE‘s lighting research is devoted to Solid State Lighting—LEDs (light–emitting diodes) and OLEDs (organic light–emitting diodes).

Azara™ and Pentas™ are trademarks of Journée Lighting, Inc.

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