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Title: Retail Lamps Study 3.1: Dimming, Flicker, and Power Quality Characteristics of LED A Lamps

To date, all three reports in the retail lamps series have focused on basic performance parameters, such as lumen output, efficacy, and color quality. This report goes a step further, examining the photoelectric characteristics (i.e., dimming and flicker) of a subset of lamps from CALiPER Retails Lamps Study 3. Specifically, this report focuses on the dimming, power quality, and flicker characteristics of 14 LED A lamps, as controlled by four different retail-available dimmers. The results demonstrate notable variation across the various lamps, but little variation between the four dimmers. Overall, the LED lamps: ~tended to have higher relative light output compared to the incandescent and halogen benchmark at the same dimmer output signal (RMS voltage). The lamps’ dimming curves (i.e., the relationship between control signal and relative light output) ranged from linear to very similar to the square-law curve typical of an incandescent lamp. ~generally exhibited symmetrical behavior—the same dimming curve—when measured proceeding from maximum to minimum or minimum to maximum control signal. ~mostly dimmed below 10% of full light output, with some exceptions for specific lamp and dimmer combinations ~exhibited a range of flicker characteristics, with many comparing favorably to the level typical of a magnetically-ballasted fluorescent lamp throughmore » at least a majority of the dimming range. ~ always exceeded the relative (normalized) efficacy over the dimming range of the benchmark lamps, which rapidly decline in efficacy when they are dimmed. This report generally does not attempt to rank the performance of one product compared to another, but instead focuses on the collective performance of the group versus conventional incandescent or halogen lamps, the performance of which is likely to be the baseline for a majority of consumers. Undoubtedly, some LED lamps perform better—or more similar to conventional lamps—than others. Some perform desirably for one characteristic, but not others. Consumers (and specifiers) may have a hard time distinguishing better-performing lamps from one another; at this time, physical experimentation is likely the best evaluation tool.« less
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  1. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
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Technical Report
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Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
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Country of Publication:
United States
32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; retail lamp; photoelectric characteristics; flicker; dimming