Life Endangering Diodes (LEDs)
Singapore 27th March 2013
Or should I say Life Endangering Duds. Maybe some of you may have some better acronyms… Fact is that in recent months more and more life endangering situations have surfaced in regards to the safe and reliable use of LEDs. I blogged 2 days ago about the recent recall in the US; now another leading LED manufacturer has just recalled it’s GU10 LED’s from the market. Sadly, I am sure there is still heaps more to come. One of the reasons that we are hearing about it now in increasing ways I believe, is that major public companies are involved, not just your little black smith from around the corner. We are talking major brands and quantities.
It is obvious to me that the pace of development and market demand (created by the big manufacturers themselves!!!) are now largely outrunning the manufacturer’s capacities to coop with proper product development, which is becoming a scary thought. In order to fulfil demand products are being launched in the market without being properly out-developed, possibly even without having been properly quality tested. It generally takes months and months to get the proper test and compliance certificates from the authorised testing labs. It is for sure that we are not talking about the traditional 2 year product development cycle anymore! I suspect that the major manufacturers outsource a lot of their LED production to third parties to speed up the process. We have just seen to what that can lead…
As a result we are finding ourselves at the short end of the stick. The consumers with unsafe and faulty products and we as lighting designers with product specifications we can no longer trust! As a result we have clients questioning our knowledge and expertise. I have had to replace LED’s in my projects over the past year, major brand LED’s, LED’s I tested with the manufacturers involved prior to specifying, but still they failed within months of installation, making us look like fools!
I have made this plea before and make it again: I implore the manufacturers to work with the lighting designers, to share their REAL knowledge of the product with us, rather than “using” us to specify products they know are not making the cut! Please level with us, together we have much more to gain!
Light Watch 4-54: As I was searching for images I suddenly thought of LED Zeppelin, the famous 70ties rock band. This whole LED thing can either be a “stairway to heaven” or come down as a lead balloon! I leave you with some images which show Led Zeppelin was way ahead of its time 🙂