RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C.—The U.S. Department of Energy recently awarded a research contract that will allow RTI International scientists to improve reliability prediction for solid-state lighting technologies and provide both manufacturers and consumers with a better understanding of product lifetimes.
The aim of the project is to build a reliability prediction tool for solid-state lighting technologies and develop accelerated test methods that simulate the environmental factors that high-efficiency lighting products encounter during a typical 15- to 20-year life span. This tool is ultimately intended to be used by lighting luminaire manufacturers to design and build energy efficient products that will meet the growing lighting demand.
As part of the cooperative agreement, RTI will receive almost $1.7 million as one of four grants focused on what DOE described as core technology research.
The award is part of nearly $15 million in grants DOE announced to support eight new research and development projects that will accelerate the development and deployment of high-efficiency solid-state lighting technologies like light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and organic LEDs (OLEDs) that have the potential to be ten times more energy efficient than conventional incandescent lighting and can last up to 25 times as long.
However, accurately determining the expected lifetime of products incorporating this emerging technology has proven difficult, necessitating the need for the improved prognostics and life testing methods that will be developed at RTI.
The RTI award will build on RTI's previous work in energy-efficient lighting technologies. RTI scientists have developed the NLITeTM technology, a revolutionary approach to energy-efficient lighting that is based on nanoscale materials that provide greater energy efficiency than is possible with the common incandescent light bulb and that do not contain mercury, making it environmentally safer than the compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulb.
Watch a video about RTI's research and development activities in solid-state lighting.