Soraa Outsources Manufacturing of LED Modules to Globetronics

Soraa Inc will ramp up orders with its contract manufacturers in Malaysia for its LED modules used in directional light LED lamps, riding on an approximate US$4bil (RM12.16bil) global market size for such illumination products in the replacement segment.

Soraa outsources the manufacturing of LED modules to Globetronics Technology Bhd in Penang and another local electronic manufacturing company in Ipoh.

Soraa chief operating officer Dr Tom Caulfield said the demand for its directional light lamps was increasing, especially from the commercial and special lighting application markets in the United States.

Based in Bayan Lepas, Globetronics essentially assembles the LED modules using LED chips supplied by Soraa.

The LED modules serve as the light source of Soraa's MR16 directional light lamp.
“We are also looking for more distributors in Asia and Europe to increase the presence of our products in these regions. This is why we can expect the demand for our LED lamp to grow exponentially.

“It is estimated that the global market for the MR16 directional lighting segment is greater than US$4bil,” he said, adding that the global solid state or LED lighting market grew greater than 30% per annum.

He said the MR16 LED lamp segment was also expected to grow more than 30% per annum.

Soraa's directional LED lamps are widely sought after in the commercial and special premium commercial market sectors, especially in the high-end retail clothing sector and in the hospitality industry as its light source has the perfect light spectrum. It does not contain ultra violet (UV) light, which can make the colours of garments on display to fade, according to Caulfield.

“Our MR16 LED lamps also don't contain infrared red light, which generates heat,” he said. Soraa's directional light lamps have one of the highest Colour Rendering Index (CRI) of 95 out of 100. He claimed the company's competitors used a blue light source to generate white colour light, which normally has a CRI of 80 to 90 out of 100. CRI is an international standard of measuring the quality of white light. The higher the CRI, the better the quality of white light.

Caulfield said Soraa had plans to introduce soon the next generation of higher performance LED chips for use in other solid state lighting products.

“This expansion of LED light chips and lamps will drive the requirement for more Soraa LED modules to be produced at both locations in Malaysia,” he said. On Soraa's LED technology, Caulfield said all white LEDs were made from GaNcrystals grown onto similar substrates.

“Sapphire and silicon carbide are used as the substrate for almost all LEDs made today. Only Soraa uses perfectly-matched GaN substrates to produce LEDs.

“This patented process, commonly referred to as GaN on GaN technology, uses perfect crystals to produce more light per area than any other LED on the market.” he said.

Two years ago, Globetronics partnered with Soraa on its new technology to produce the LED module capable of generating near-perfect white colour light.

In the third quarter of 2012, Soraa successfully launched the LED module into a commercially-viable product.

Globetronics chief executive officer Heng Huck Lee said the advantage of Soraa's LED technology was that it produced a single bin or a single group of white colour light that could be fully utilised in the general lighting market.

“The conventional approach of generating white light from a blue light source normally ends up producing different groups of white light, which may have limited usage or application for the general lighting industry.

“This leads to high inventory, which erodes the competitive edge of LED chip manufacturers,” he said.

Heng said this year the group would spend 2% of its revenue for new technological products, compared with 1% previously.

“This would include the development of new sensor chips for enhancing the interface features and applications of smartphones and tablets, which should come out in the final quarter of 2013,” he said.

Globetronics' LED, sensor chips, and timing devices business generates about 80% of the group's revenue.

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