General Electric (NYSE:GE) unveiled a new LED lightbulb that is designed to replace a standard 40-watt incandescent bulb and will go on sale later this year or in early 2011.
The new bulb is expected to consume just 9 watts (a 77% energy savings), while lasting more than 25 times as long.
GE said it designed the bulb to better direct light downward on the intended surface and all around, not just out the top of a lampshade, as many current LED bulbs are prone to do. The new GE LED bulb offers 450 lumens--the Energy Star® threshold to be considered a 40-watt incandescent replacement. Currently available LED bulbs produce 350 lumens or less.
GE has filed multiple patent applications for the bulb and expects it will be an ENERGY STAR® qualified LED omnidirectional light bulb.
“This is a bulb that can virtually light your kid’s bedroom desk lamp from birth through high school graduation,” says John Strainic, global product general manager, GE Lighting.
LEDs are expected to offer several advantages over current energy-efficient compact flourescent lightbulbs. These include a slight boost in efficiency, longer lifespans, far less heat production and no use of the toxic substance mercury.
Retailers will set the price of the new bulb, but it is expected to be $40 to $50.
GE said prototypes of the bulb, which will be on display at tradeshows this year, will contain LED components made by Cree (Nasdaq: CREE). However, it did not say if the Cree components will be involved in the full commerical roll-out.
“The introduction of high-quality retrofit light bulbs, like the GE Energy Smart® LED bulb, is a key next step in the LED lighting revolution,” notes Norbert Hiller, Cree vice president and general manager, LED Components.