Switch on to LEDs, says expert

Head of Philips Lighting urges designers to embrace emerging light technology

Designers need to grasp emerging light technology and focus it more closely on their needs, says an expert. “Up to now boffins have been telling you what you can achieve and get out of LEDs,” Sarah Bastin told this week’s Landscape Institute Lighting & Landscapes conference The product and development head for Philips Lighting said: “But it’s up to the designers to push manufacturers for what you want out of these products.” She added 5W bulbs were being developed for car headlamps and because LEDs were uv-free they could be bolted to historic buildings without fear of damaging sensitive surfaces. She warned the conference to take a balanced view of LEDs. Numerous benefits included robustness and an energy saving of 80 per cent over traditional lights. However they were still more expensive and though some LEDs were said to have a life of over 100,000 hours environmental conditions could reduce longevity. Bastin gave examples of landscapes that had undergone the “pure and saturated light” treatment with pin-sharp heat-free LEDs. These included ice sculptures, bridges in Glasgow and Park Saint Antione, Lyon, France. See April’s Landscape Review for more on the conference.

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