Light & Building 1
Frankfurt, 11th April 2010
The first day on the fair is generally the day of excitement and great expectation. You know that many manufacturers use the fair to show the future of lighting, with some of their products on show not yet available in the market. So you are anxious to get a feel about what’s new and what are the latest developments. I arrived only in the afternoon so I had only a short time to wander around mostly in Hall 3.
One of my first stops happened to be the ERCO stand on which I will report today. Often leading the way in new developments it was not surprising that LED systems were the dominant new products. I was told that more than 600 new LED products were developed for this fair alone! The stand itself was lit mostly with LED lighting reportedly saving more than 80% in energy alone compare to their traditional stand lighting pre-LED in 2004. I am pretty sure to see this being representative of the overall trend in the lighting industry when I visit more of the fair.
What strikes me most is the progression in the LED technology. While in 2006 we were mostly talking RGB color type LED lighting, Frankfurt 2008 was mostly characterized by the move into white architectural lighting. This year 2010, it looks like we have moved into to functional performance lighting systems. For ERCO to have their Lightcast down light range (one of the all time favorites of lighting designers) replaced with the new Quintessence LED range shows great confidence that the performance has reached the desired quality we as lighting designers expect. With new lens technologies and the collimation of LEDs in new optical reflector systems, the lighting performance has now reach levels previously only thought achievable with metal halide. With wattages between 14 to 28W reaching 60 lm/W, this is becoming quite impressive. Add to that DALI driven color control possibilities allowing seamless transitions to any color within the color triangle and LED has become a very powerful lighting design tool.
Frankfurt is traditionally also the platform where we meet our colleagues and friends in the business. Today I caught up with many already (at the WEEF and ERCO stand parties in the evening) and look forward to catch up and meet many more over the days to come.