American Elephants

Phillips Announces a Lightbulb Breakthrough! by The Elephant's Child

Today Philips unveiled its 12-watt EnduraLED light bulb, the industry’s first LED replacement for a 60 watt incandescent lightbulb.  The press release says it will deliver up to 80 percent energy savings and last 25 times longer than its century-old predecessor.

Every year more than 425 million 60-watt incandescent light bulbs are sold in the United States, representing approximately 50% of the domestic incandescent light bulb market. According to calculations by Philips, this LED replacement has the potential to save 32.6 terawatt-hours of electricity in one year, enough to power the lights of 16.7 million U.S. households or 14.4% of the total number of households in the entire US. It would also eliminate the generation 5.3 million metric tons of carbon emissions annually.

The new lamp uses an innovative design and remote phosphor technology to deliver the same soft white light and shape consumers are familiar with in an incandescent.  The EnduraLED works with standard dimmers, further simplifying use and allowing consumers to enjoy an effective, low energy solution for lighting in the home.  For business users, particularly those within the hospitality sector, the new lamp will provide instant plug-in savings, through extended life and reduced energy and maintenance costs, in comparison with traditional bulbs.

There is a video available at the website, and pictures of the bulb which is odd-looking.  This does seem to be a breakthrough, and may save us from a future of despised “twisty bulbs.” As with all press releases, you have to watch for what it doesn’t mention as much as for what it does say. Price is not mentioned, but perhaps inferred in the long bulb life.

It doesn’t say anything about 75 watt bulbs, 3-way bulbs, or low watt refrigerator and stove bulbs.  Looking at the lightbulb display in Home Depot, there’s a lot that’s not covered here, but a breakthrough is a breakthrough.  I would be happier if they weren’t justifying it with “saving carbon emissions,” which is nonsense.  All the lightbulb manufacturers are working on alternatives,  so there will be more innovation to come, if the government stays out of it.

This breakthrough seems to offer hope, not only of freedom from lights that take a long time to turn on and are hard on the eyes; but of freedom from government nannyism — or is this taking that hope thing too far?

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