Tuesday, January 13, 2009

LED technology - OLEDs (Organic light emitting diodes)

Organic light-emitting diodes - OLEDs - emit light when a current flows through them. Unlike conventional LEDs, OLEDs are made from layers of plastic and other organic (carbon-based) materials.

Examples are already in mass production for displays in MP3 players and phones.

Sheets of OLED material are proposed to replace light bulbs and fluorescent tubes for house and office lighting.

There are several reasons why OLEDs are causing so much excitement amongst makers of gadgets and lighting products:
The materials are deposited by industrial coating processes which are cheaper than the techniques required to make conventional LEDs.
They are inherently thin.
They can be made on flexible plastic substrates - which will almost certainly lead to full colour flexible displays less than 1mm thick.
All colours, and multi-colours, are possible
However, there are drawbacks:
OLEDs are not yet as efficient at making light as conventional LEDs, although they are getting closer and already beat ordinary light bulbs.
Certain materials in OLEDs are incredibly sensitive to moisture which leads to short life, particularly on plastic substrates. This is the main reasons holding back flexible OLED manufacture.
LED technology can be divided into two: 'small molecule' championed originally by Kodak, and Cambridge Display Technology's 'polymer' type sometimes called P-OLEDs.

Almost all displays in production are small molecule.

These materials have to be deposited in a vacuum, but this is of little inconvenience for small displays on glass substrates.

Polymer types can also be vacuum processed but, most importantly, can also be printed using standard printing techniques. This 'solution processing' is far cheaper than vacuum processing.

Like-for-like materials have tended to be less efficient at producing light when solution processed, but this may no longer be the case.

OLEDs are generally made of several layers. The following is a typical stack, although many variations are possible:
Electron donor
Electron transport
Hole transport
Hole donor.

Several of these can be moisture-sensitive, particularly the most effective cathode material: metallic calcium.

For all practical purposes, glass blocks all moisture, so displays made on a glass substrate and covered by a second glass sheet can have a long life, particularly if the edges are hermetically sealed.

Moisture passes fairly easily through plastics, leading to much reduced durability, but plastic substrates are essential for flexible displays.

This has lead to a quest for 'barrier layers' which can be coated on plastic to stop moisture getting through.

So far there is no effective barrier layer that is flexible and cheap enough for mass-production.

Quite good barrier layers exist, which are quite expensive because they are made with many layers of water-blocking metal oxides, separated by other layers that stop the oxide cracking.

The dream is to produce OLEDs, both full-colour displays and white lighting types, on flexible plastic.
Not necessarily because the products will be flexed in use, but because they will be far more robust than millimetre-thick glass sheets to handle, transport, and install.

Within the molecules that make OLEDs emit light, there are two different processes that can produce light: phosphorescence and fluorescence, also known as triples and singlet emission respectively.

The type of emission is directly dependent on the materials used in the OLED.

Phosphorescent processes produce more photons (light) for a given number of electrons (current), but are slower - more suited to lighting, less suited to displays.
Some researchers that argue fluorescence can be made to produce as many photons as phosphorescence.

OLED displays should not be confused with E Ink displays - E Ink displays only reflect light and emit no light of their own.

Death of a Commodity

Lighting is definitely one of the most interesting areas of the electronics industry at the moment. After hardly any major changes in the near century and a half since Swan/Edison/A N Other first commercialised the concept, the humble light bulb now seems doomed unless it can be made efficient enough to compete with other lighting technologies.

While there are efforts to make light bulbs more efficient, other technologies are trying hard to replace them. The most promising of these is LED technology which is now in a position to fill many of the roles that are traditionally filled by incandescent lighting.

Manufacturers such as Cree and Lumileds are battling to have the top performing power LED, with regular announcements claiming either the best performance, or that LEDs have proven themselves for another new application, dental lighting and street lighting being the latest according to Lumileds.
However, LEDs may not have everything their own way, other technologies may challenge their current superiority. The light bulb could make a resurgence using a new coating which reflects back the IR energy and allows the filament to burn hotter and more efficiently.

Another interesting technology on the horizon is OLED lighting. This type of lighting may take a few years to hit the mainstream market, but looks a good bet for domestic and commercial lighting. OLED has many advantages; a more natural colour than LEDs, it is attractive, very efficient and should be very cheap to produce when some problems are ironed out.

CFL lighting also deserves a mention, but it suffers many of the same drawbacks of incandescent lighting only to a lesser extent, and also contains mercury, which can make disposal after use complex.

I will take a look more thoroughly at these technologies in future blogs and hopefully have a chance to speak to some of the leading companies in the field for a first hand perspective.

Led-World Exclusive -Researchers Develop Super-Efficient LED Light

LED light bulbs are already more efficient than your average bulb, but researchers at the Renssalaer Polytechnic Institute have developed a new kind of LED that exhibits both improved energy efficiency and lighting performance. The researchers‘ polarization-matching LED shows an 18 percent increase in light output and a 22 percent increase in wall plug efficiency (the amount of electricity that the LED converts into light).

Renssalaer’s LED is more powerful thanks to a reduction in “efficiency droop”, which makes LEDs most efficient when receiving low-density electrical currents and least efficient when higher density electrical currents are received.

The research team figured out that the region of the LED where light is generated contains materials with mismatched polarization. By reducing the polarization mismatch, electron leakage can also be reduced, thus increasing energy efficiency. So Renssalaer’s researchers introduced a new design with better matched polarization. As expected, they saw a reduction in efficiency droop and electron leakage.

Since LED lights are not yet entirely mainstream, advances made now can easily be implemented in both current and future LED installations.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

OSRAM LED Engineering Kit for Lighting Designers

The LED Engineering Kit, which OSRAM Opto Semiconductors is now offering for sale on the LED Light for You (LLFY) platform, provides a means of gaining practical knowledge of LED lighting.
This kit is a powerful tool for anyone who wants to test LEDs, various accessories and applications. The Engineering Kit includes components from various LLFY partners. In addition to the OSRAM OSTAR high-power LED, there are various lenses and reflectors, a power supply, a thermal interface and a selection of heat sinks. A brochure is also included for technical assistance.

Lighting designers, luminaire manufacturers and architects are all heavily involved in creating lighting systems that contain the latest technology. They can use the Engineering Kit as a simple way of gaining an insight into this new LED technology and test different LED lighting solutions. Different reflectors, lenses and heat sinks can be combined to create numerous variations and provide an idea of what the new light sources can achieve and what their special features are.

The Engineering Kit contains the OSTAR LED, two reflectors from Fraen with medium and narrow beam angles and three lenses from Ledil - one with a wide angle, a spot lens and a cat's eye for side deflection. A thermal interface from Laird that provides optimum heat dissipation, two heat sinks (from Coolermaster and an aluminum plate) an OSRAM Optotronic power supply for the European/Asian or NAFTA market round off the kit. The kit demonstrates the numerous options offered by these tiny light sources and indicates the accessories needed.

"An LED alone is not a light fitting", said Sebastian Lyschick, Network Manager LLFY at OSRAM Opto Semiconductors. "Our kit provides a quick and simple means of understanding the new LED technology and its exciting possibilities. It can be used as the basis for developing projects and products with network partners." The Engineering Kit and brochure are available exclusively at www.ledlightforyou.com/led-kit.

Led-World Exclusive -Cree Installs LED Lights in Pentagon

LED manufacturer Cree has been awarded a contract from the U.S. Department of Defense to supply over 4,200 recessed LED lights for the Pentagon, the company announced Tuesday. Financial details were not disclosed.

Testing commissioned by the U.S. government determined that Cree's LR24 recessed LED lights would offer a 22 percent energy reduction compared with fluorescent lights, and save the Pentagon 140 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year.

The government also commissioned a cost analysis that showed the lights would yield a payback of less than four years once things like energy savings, maintenance, and the expense of properly disposing mercury-laden fluorescent bulbs were taken into account, according to Cree.

The new lighting will be installed in Wedge 5 of the Pentagon, coinciding with the major Pentagon renovation already under way in that area.

The purchase also happens to follow the advice of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan recently proposed by President-elect Barack Obama in his January 3 address.

As part of his plan to reduce reliance on foreign oil and create more jobs, President-elect Obama has suggested that the government will "renovate public buildings to make them more energy efficient."

Analysts have predicted that LED lighting will replace incandescent bulbs, making LED lighting manufacturers a bright spot to watch for within the struggling tech industry.

LED lights in Supermarket Refrigeration Gets Cheaper!

Led-World found that LED lighting systems enable big energy savings in supermarket refrigeration and have been getting cheaper every year.

LED system prices dropped 9% in 2008 alone and DOE's Solid State Lighting Research and Development Program projects they will fall by 50% by 2012.

In preliminary analysis released in August 2008, DOE showed that, assuming a 50% decline in LED prices, the highest standards would make sense for all supermarket refrigeration systems and would save purchasers $5 billion in net savings over 30 years.

However, for the analysis underlying today's standard, DOE rejected its own LED price estimates, instead assuming that LED prices will stay at 2008 levels forever.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

100 Simple Ways to Change Your Life Healthy

No matter how perfect you may think you are, the fact this there's always some small way you can improve upon yourself. Whether it's broadening your knowledge or reducing your impact on the earth, there are seemingly endless little things you can do to make a change for the better. Here, we'll discuss 100 of these steps, and how you can go about doing them.

* Health -

Good health is the foundation of a good life, so make these improvements, and they'll resonate out to the rest of your life.

1. Eat breakfast every morning: Eating breakfast is important for your health and
mental power, supplying essential vitamins, minerals, and energy for your day.
2. Get a good night's rest: You just can't have a happy and productive life if
you're tired all of the time, so get some quality shut eye.
3. Drink water: Step up your water intake to lose weight, feel better, and improve
your skin.
4. Eat slowly: Slow down when you eat, and you'll find that you consume less while
still feeling satisfied.
5. Cut down on junk food: Junk food has a nasty way of bringing your health down, so
avoid it whenever possible, opting instead for healthy food like fresh fruits and
6. Practice good dental hygiene: Researchers have found that dental hygiene is
important for more than cosmetic reasons-it can help you chew food and even avoid
heart disease.
7. Drink tea: Be sure to check out the powerhouse of benefits that tea can deliver,
which includes improved memory and prevention of ills such as cavities, cancer,
and heart disease.
8. Get some exercise: Whether you need to lose weight or not, exercise will have a
positive effect on your overall health and quality of life.
9. Improve your energy: If you're feeling sluggish all day, chances are you're just
not going to feel good about yourself. So take a few steps to boost your energy,
and you'll be better in your daily life.
10.Intensify your workouts: Researchers have found that by doing more intense
workouts, you can enjoy similar benefits that you would with a more relaxed
workout for a longer period of time.
11.Enjoy fish a few times a week: Eat fish, and you'll get a serving of Omega-3
fatty acids, which can help reduce heart disease.
12.Wear better shoes: Don't torture your toes with restrictive shoes all the time-
limit the amount of time you spend in uncomfortable shoes.
13.Protect your skin: Stay out of the sun to avoid skin damage, or use sunblock to
14.Eat at home: It's easier and cheaper to prepare healthy foods on your own at
home, and skillfully cooking a meal is sure to impress just about anyone.
15.Get tested for prediabetes: Diabetes is a disease that many Americans are
susceptible to, and by discovering it early on you can prevent it or lessen its
16.Take a daily walk: Get a little bit of movement and clear your mind with a walk
every day.
17.Lose weight: One of the best things you can do for your health and overall
quality of life is to shed a few pounds.

Social -
Take these steps to change your social life for the better.

18.Join a book club: Get some social interaction while improving your knowledge with
a book club.
19.Get out of the house: Believe it or not, the world just isn't going to come to
you. You've got to get out of your "zone" for social interaction.
20.Volunteer: For a rewarding social experience, look into volunteer opportunities.
21.Ignore minor irritations: Whether it's some jerk in traffic, or incessant
Facebook application requests, some things just aren't worth dealing with.
22.Start a blog: Spark an online discussion and network with new people through a
23.Talk to strangers: Don't hesitate to spark a conversation with someone you don't
know-you just might enjoy yourself, or even make a new friend.
24.Don't stereotype or label people: Avoid dismissing people based on factors you
don't fully understand, and you may find that they have something to offer you.
25.Call old friends: You'd be surprised how many people would be overjoyed to hear
from you, especially if it's been a while since you've seen them.
26.Go to church: Make new friends and get in touch with your spiritual side at
church or temple.
27.Host a party: Spend some time with good friends and enjoy yourself at home by
inviting others over for a party.
28.Enjoy a hobby: Having a regular, relaxing activity will bring you joy.
29.Join a club: Whether you're into board games or photography, there's a group out
there for you.

Emotional -
Improve your emotional life with these simple strategies.

30.Make an effort to be happy: Whether you actually feel happy or not, make it a
point to attempt happiness. It will help you feel better, as well as others
around you.
31.Consider religion: If you're not a spiritual person, consider becoming more
involved with religion to improve your emotional well-being.
32.Stop taking things personally: Although it may seem to the contrary, know that
not everyone is out to make your life harder.
33.Be optimistic: Put a positive spin on things and feel better about the future.
34.Know when to lose sleep: Sometimes, you have more important things to do than
sleep, but they key is knowing when that should happen.
35.Step out of your comfort zone: Make it a point to step out of your comfort zone
once in awhile. It's a great way to advance yourself.
36.Get rid of ill-fitting clothing: Clothes that don't fit right will just make you
look bad and feel worse about yourself. If you love a piece, but it just doesn't
look good, consider getting it tailored.
37.Spend time with a child: Look at the world through a child's eyes and get
inspired. You'll learn to appreciate simple things and see life with excitement.
38.Pamper yourself: Take care of yourself, whether that means getting a pint of ice
cream now and then, or just getting a spa treatment.
39.Celebrate your successes: When you've accomplished something great, take a moment
to feel good about it!
40.Quit your technology addiction: Although you may love your BlackBerry, you'll
feel a whole lot better if you just step away from the screen for a while.
41.Set goals: By setting goals, you'll give yourself something to strive for and
look forward to.
42.Feel good about yourself: Make a decision to improve your self-confidence, and
you'll feel better. Others will notice it, too.
43.Be thankful: Every now and then, take some time to acknowledge all of the good
things you have in your life, big and small.
44.Cut yourself some slack: Avoid inventing your own impossible, stringent rules
that you have to stick to-they'll only make you feel nervous and guilty.
45.Let go of the past: Don't hold grudges-let go, and you'll free up emotional
46.Don't be dramatic: Stop inflating small problems, or you'll make yourself more
anxious than you need to be.
47.Express yourself: Let your emotions come out through art, writing, or other forms
of expression.
48.Meditate: Take some time out every day to have an inner dialogue with yourself.

Financial -
Make these changes to improve your life's financial outlook.
49.Pay off debt: Nothing will improve your finances better than simply getting rid
of debt.
50.Build an emergency fund: Keep an emergency fund to save yourself from plummeting
into the red when something pops up, and you'll be much more secure.
51.Track your spending: At some point in their lives, nearly everyone has wondered
where all their money goes. Try this exercise to finally get to the bottom of it,
and identify spots where your money could be better spent.
52.Be frugal: Embrace frugality in your life, and you'll save money while living
more simply.
53.Make extra payments: Pay off mortgage and other large debts early, and you'll
take a load off.
54.Diversify your income: Provide yourself with some financial security by finding
multiple sources of income.
55.Save: The concept is simple-save money, and you'll have more financial power to
do the things you'd like to do.
56.Eat at home more often: Eating out all the time may be fun, but preparing meals
at home is a better financial strategy.
57.Invest: Investing is not only fun, it's an excellent way to make your money grow.
58.Set a goal: Give yourself a financial goal to achieve, whether it's saving for a
particular item, or doubling your investments.
59.Save for retirement: Don't give your future self a huge mess to take care of-save
now, and you'll enjoy it later.

Mental -
Improve your mind by taking these simple steps.

60.Go back to school: Continuing your education does not have to be a complicated
endeavor. Take an online class, or just a weekend seminar.
61.Read classic books: Improve your mind by finally picking up all those books you
were supposed to read in school.
62.Plan: Always have a plan for your life, so you'll know what you're working
63.Quit procrastinating: Resolve to get moving, and you'll find that you have much
more time than you originally realized.
64.Get inspired by a book: Read a book that will help you spark positive changes in
your life.
65.Learn from your mistakes: Don't let mistakes get you down. Instead, consider what
you did wrong, and how you can avoid doing so again in the future.
66.Stop worrying: Let go of worry, and know that the future will come no matter what
you do about it.
67.Learn to play a musical instrument: Pick up a guitar, or even a harp, to improve
your mental capacity and have something fun to do.
68.Work to your own advantage: Improve upon what you can, and let the rest fall
69.Think slowly: Instead of jumping to conclusions, carefully calculate what a
situation means. Doing so can help you save relationships that might be damaged
by rash thinking
70.Participate in a debate: Have a rational discussion with someone of similar
intellect to improve your knowledge.
71.Learn a new language: Broaden your horizons by learning how to speak a new
72.Visit Wikipedia: Spend some time on Wikipedia learning lots of interesting facts
you've never realized before.

Habits -
Make these changes in your daily life to improve upon yourself.

73.Quit smoking: It's the single most important thing you can do for your health,
appearance, and energy. You'll smell better, too.
74.Wake up early: Be an early riser, and you'll find that you have more time to get
things done.
75.Spend more time outside: Head outside to become more active and enjoy the world
around you.
76.Be organized: Make things easier on yourself by living a more organized life.

At Work -
You spend so much time at work, but probably don't often consider how you can improve upon this important facet of your life. Take these steps to make things just a little bit better.

77.Make friends with your coworkers: One of the easiest and most important things
you can do to improve your career is to practice inner networking. Socialize with
your coworkers, and they'll be more willing to help you when you need it.
78.Improve your writing skills: If you improve upon your writing skills, you'll
instantly sound more intelligent and persuasive.
79.Collaborate: Don't go it alone-ask for help, and give help in return.
80.Keep your inbox empty: Reduce anxiety and simplify by clearing out your inbox as
much as you can.
81.Leave work at the door: Don't bring work home with you, or you'll stress yourself
out at home.
82.Join a professional association: Network with others in your field for fun and
career advancement.
83.Ask for a raise: Simply asking for a raise you deserve is a no-brainer way to
feel better about work and your paycheck.
84.Improve your resume: If you're not happy with your job, give your resume a
facelift and consider seeking a new position.
85.Improve your system: If you've got a messy desk, or generally lead a disorganized
work life, take charge by reorganizing.
86.Start your own business: One of the best ways to improve your career is to go
into business for yourself.

In Your Community -
Getting involved in your community is a great way to improve upon your life. Try these methods for getting out there.

87.Vote: Impact your community's future by participating in the election of
88.Donate unused items: Instead of holding a garage sale, pass your old items on to
people who need them-like books to schools, and clothing to shelters.
89.Support charitable endeavors: Whether it's with money or time, do what you can to
help out charities in your community.
90.Be a coach: Offer to coach a youth sport, and you'll shape young lives while
having fun.
91.Visit your local library: Take advantage of your community's library to both save
money and broaden your mind.

In the Environment -
An excellent way to improve upon yourself is to reduce the
negative impact you have on the world. Take these steps to get greener and change
your life for the better.

92.Work to reduce your carbon emissions: Find out about the many things you can do
to help cut your carbon emissions, and then take action on them.
93.Improve your gas mileage: Drive more slowly and coast as much as you can to
improve your gas mileage.
94.Turn off the lights: Cut your waste and energy bill by turning off your lights
whenever you don't need them.
95.Get a reusable water bottle: Keep plastic water bottles out of our landfills by
getting a container you can use over and over again.
96.Reduce your trash: Take steps to cut down on the waste you put in landfills.
97.Buy local and organic food: Support your health and local farmer by purchasing
local, organic produce.
98.Adjust your thermostat: Let your heater and AC take a small break by adjusting
your thermostat to reduce waste.
99.Stop using plastic bags: Quit using plastic bags, and you'll both reduce your
impact and save animals.
100.Take shorter showers: Save a precious resource by reducing the amount of water
you use in your daily shower.

Enjoy Life !!!!!!

Friday, January 9, 2009

LED-WORLD EXCLUSIVE : LEAKED: 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class (W212) brochures

A brochure of the new W212 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class has been scanned and let loose onto the internet, so here’s a preview of the next generation de-facto communiting choice for businessmen in Malaysia. Styling-wise, this new edition completes the E-Class design’s transformation from curvy bulk into a new sportier, edgier and more angular design. The trademark quad oval headlamps are now square-ish, much like the
Lexus GS.
Above is a size comparison chart between the new W212 and the model it replaces as well as its competitiors, the Audi A6 and the BMW 5-Series. The A6 is clearly the longest and widest of the lot while remaining lowest as well, but it does not have the longest wheelbase. The new W212 is longer, wider and lower than the W211 so it should prove to have a sportier stance as well as be more stable on the road. It’s wheelbase has also grown by 16mm.

The image at the beginning of this story is the standard model with the regular foglamps, of which design reminds you of what Brabus usually does to a Mercedes foglamp, so they’ll probably have to think of something else with this E-Class! Now this image above shows us what we saw earlier in the initial batch of leaked shots, LED daytime driving lights in place of where the foglamps are. They are arranged in some sort of L shape.

This is the version with the AMG bodykit, also featuring the LED driving lights. You can see the differences in the front bumper, it has a frowney shape to its central air intake compared to the regular E-Class bumper’s smiley air intake. The sideskirt also bulges out a little towards the rear wheel on the AMG car.

The new W212 E-Class is quite a handsome and aggressive car from the front but when you get to the rear, I don’t know about you but my first thoughts were “fail”. The integrated exhausts tailpipes are a nice touch but as this photo is the E 500, it’s not known at this point whether the base models like the new E 200 CGI will get a similiar design.

The interior is quite clearly an evolution of the W204 C-Class’s interior. The sexy curved and thin wood panels of the W211’s interior is now gone, and replaced by thick and flat pieces of wood on a dash design that has also gone all angular like the car’s exterior. I don’t know, the interior kinda looks like it was lifted from a luxury truck or SUV rather than a Mercedes-Benz, so I really prefer the old W211’s interior. Ah well, all the better for people who plan to pick up a pre-owned W211 facelift in the future.

The leaked spec sheets reveal the new engine range for the W212 E-Class. Gone is the familiar E 200 K moniker, instead replacing it is the new E 200 CGI. The brochure and spec sheets actually doesn’t really reveal what kind of forced induction the new 1.8 liter engine uses, but just looking at the torque curve will tell you that it’s a new quick-spooling turbocharger, so now we can finally bid goodbye to the Kompresser supercharger of the W210 and W211. The new E 200 CGI’s 1.8 liter turbocharged engine also has direct injection and puts out 181bhp at 5,250rpm as well as 270Nm of torque between 1,800 to 4,200rpm. This is a very decent amount and beats the hell out of the 523i’s 230Nm, plus it kicks in at a very low RPM too. 0 to 100km/h takes 8.7 seconds, while the top speed is 235km/h.

The new 1.8 liter turbocharged direct injection engine also comes in E 250 CGI guise. The V6-powered E 230 is now missing from the line-up. In E 250 CGI form, the engine produces 201hp at 5,250 and 310Nm of torque between 2,000 to 4,500rpm. 0 to 100km/h takes 7.9 seconds, while the top speed is a little higher at 245km/h. The E 250 CGI also has wider tyres in 225/55R16 size compared to the E 200 CGI’s 205/60R16 tyres.

Other engine options include a V6 and a V8 in the E 350 CGI and the E 500 respectively. These models come with either rear wheel drive or optional 4MATIC all-wheel drive. The E 280 seems missing, but may only be gone in the originating country of this leaked brochure. The E 350 CGI’s 3.5 liter V6 puts out 288hp at 6,400rpm and an impressive 365Nm of torque at 3,000rpm, thanks to its direct injection technology. The E 350 4MATIC’s engine has different power figures - 268hp at 6,000rpm and 350Nm of torque between 2,400 to 5,000rpm, an impressively wide peak torque spread for a normally aspirated engine. The 5.5 liter V8-powered E 500 and E 500 4MATIC produce 382 horsepower at 6,000rpm and 530Nm of torque between 2,800 rpm to 4,800rpm.

There are a few oil burners to choose from, ranging from the E 200 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY all the way up to a E 350 CDI BlueTEC. There is also a 4MATIC version of the E 350 CDI. The inline-4 diesels in the E 200 CDI, E 200 CDI and the E 250 CDI are the new 2.1 liter OM651 diesel engine that was unveiled recently. The E 200 CDI puts out 134hp between 3,000 to 4,600rpm and 330Nm of torque between 1,600 to 2,800rpm. The E 220 CDI does 167hp between 3,000 to 4,200rpm and 400Nm of torque between 1,400 to 2,800rpm. The 201hp E 250 CDI puts out a massive 500Nm from 1,600rpm all the way to 1,800rpm.
The sole V6 turbodiesel option is the 3.0 liter E 350 CDI engine which has three power outputs in three different variants. The E 350 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY gets 228hp at 3,800rpm and 540Nm of torque between 1,600rpm and 2,400rpm, while the E 350 BlueTEC has less power - only 208hp at 3,400rpm but the same 540Nm of torque between 1,600 to 2,600rpm. Finally, the all-wheel drive E 350 CDI 4MATIC gets 221hp at 3,800rpm and 540Nm of torque between 1,600 to 2,400rpm. These numbers by the 3.0 V6 turbo diesel are all very close to the highest power output of the 2.1 liter twin turbocharged diesel, which is what makes the latter engine very special. What it lacks is the smooth silky refinement and sound of a V6.

Please look after the jump for a photo gallery containing the scanned brochures. It reveals a few colour options as well as the different interior colour schemes.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

House gets 150 LED lights, reduces power consumption by 80%

Japanese homebuilder Yamane-Mokuzai [JP] has reportedly received an order from an individual for a single-family house that will illuminated with LED lighting only.

The company says the house, which is currently under construction, is located in Higashi Hiroshima and will be completed next month. It’s 221 sq. meters large and will have about 150 lights. In addition, Sharp’s Plasmacluster Ion technology will be built into some of the lamps and is supposed to fight viruses and bacteria in the air.

Yamane-Mokuzai claims that compared with standard lamps, power consumption will be reduced by a whopping 80%. If the lights are used for more than 10 years, the LED fixtures will be entirely recouped.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Led-World Exclusive-Audi LED Design Full Details

Audi was the first automobile manufacturer to recognize the potential of revolutionary LED lighting technology and then incorporate it during development of its vehicles. The brand with the four rings has since acquired a technological edge putting it years ahead of the competition, and is a key driver of this innovation. Crucial for the exterior design: Not only during the day but also at night, all Audi models are recognizable at a glance thanks to LED daytime running lights. And each Audi has its own personality: The sweeping light strip on the Audi A4 exudes elegance. And that of the Audi R8 radiates strength and dominance: Its headlights were designed and constructed entirely on the basis of energy efficient and environmentally friendly LED technology.

A tiny dot on your finger, as minute as a grain of sand. That is all. A layperson might just carelessly flick it away – but it electrifies those in the know. After all, this speck of material uses electrical energy to generate more white light than any conventional light source in the world. A light-emitting diode, or LED, is a semiconductor device – just a square millimeter in size – which boasts a remarkable physical property. It can convert electrical energy directly into light and is unbeatably efficient when it comes to energy consumption. Today’s xenon and LED headlights are four times more energy efficient than halogen headlights. And by 2018, LED technology should be about eight times more efficient than halogen light. In addition, LEDs excel due to their practically indefinite service life and react up to ten times more quickly than traditional incandescent bulbs.

This success story began five years ago in Detroit. At the North American International Auto Show, Audi presented the Pikes Peak quattro concept study. This elegant SUV, inspiration for today’s Audi Q7, garnered attention with the world’s first fog lights equipped with high-performance light-emitting diodes. Integrated into the broad bumper as striking strips of light, the fog lights were a sensation not merely in a technical sense. The strip-shaped lights were also aesthetically pleasing and very popular with the public.

Soon thereafter, the 12-cylinder Audi A8 went into series production as the world’s first vehicle with LED daytime running lights. High-performance light-emitting diodes as a light source for headlights? Nothing of the sort had ever been done. “Audi blazed trails with LED technology. And even though we’re years ahead of our direct competitors, this field continues to bear tremendous potential for us. Our research counts on the ‘Vorsprung durch Technik’ typical at Audi and no one can imagine our designs without it,” says Dr. Wolfgang Huhn, Head of the Light and Visibility Department at Audi.

Unprecedented scope in vehicle design

The tiny light sources present designers with spectacular opportunities. Stefan Sielaff, Audi’s Head of Design, explains: “LEDs unlock the door to unrealized design possibilities for exterior design and interiors alike.” For example, a number of lightemitting diodes can be combined to create various shapes, which can ultimately result in a distinctive visual appearance. The taillights of the Audi A6 Avant are likely the best-known example of any tail end. These light-emitting diodes in a ring-shaped array have become every bit as instantly recognizable as the sweeping LED daytime running lights at the front end of the Audi A4. Headlights naturally play a pivotal role in a vehicle’s light design. An appealing front end with one-of-a-kind lights makes a car as well as its personality and the brand recognizable at a glance. Sielaff adds: “LED daytime running lights epitomize this fact.

Every light design is different, yet there’s no mistaking that every single vehicle is an Audi. Our daytime running lights cemented the visible persona of Audi models on the road and hone our progressive, sporty design.”

For quite some time, drivers have been able to spot an approaching Audi from far away. But different configurations of LED daytime running lights now permit distinct differences among the Audi models – even in the dark. A strip of light can be designed to underscore a vehicle’s character, just as eyeliner emphasizes an eye.

This fundamentally alters the body language of Audi models. “The lighting configuration of yesteryear – the radiator grille along with the round lights – called to mind the face of a friendly bear,” notes AndrĂ© Georgi, Senior Designer of Lighting Systems. Nowadays: “The LED daytime running lights for the A Series, e.g. on the A4 and A5, look determined, elegant, and dynamic. The lights on the Audi Q5 and Audi Q7 appear especially broad and powerful. And the LED daytime running lights on the R8 symbolize the horns of a bull charging full speed ahead, bursting with vigor and pride.”

Speaking of the Audi R8: This sports car constitutes the spearhead of Audi’s light strategy and is optionally available with the world’s first all-LED headlights. In addition to the daytime running lights, the turn signals as well as low-beam and high-beam headlights are all executed by means of light-emitting diodes. The first all-LED headlights represent the triumph of an idea for Audi. Huhn explains: “A lot of people initially viewed this development as a mere marketing gimmick. Yet everyone who has seen these lights in action is not only astonished by the excellent output, but also thrilled with the homogenous distribution of light and the agreeable, daylight-esque color of the light.

Audi’s light strategy also benefits from something quite different, namely a psychological phenomenon: “Bright light created by small, compact light sources is unpleasant for the human eye. The combination of headlights and LED daytime running lights enlarges the light source, thus eliminating a nuisance,” explains Georgi.

Ideas and visions from technology and design

The true key to success in Ingolstadt, however, is the daring to break new ground coupled with close teamwork. “The remarkable cooperation between design and technology at Audi is surely unique in the automotive industry,” adds Georgi. The design process is initiated by developing and defining a vehicle’s character. The light designers and engineers from Technical Development play a hands-on role in this process from the word go. For example, one of the engineers – fittingly nicknamed “The Bridge” by his colleagues – works right in the middle of the Design Department. Conversely, a lot of the technically relevant headlight components are designed by Technical Development. This close rapport ensures that the departments confer with one another every day.

As a vehicle’s exterior takes shape, the proportions of the headlights and the taillights are defined. Georgi says: “It’s a truly intensive process for us to develop new headlights; every idea and every vision from Technical Development and Design come together.”

Audi’s light designers turn to industrial design and architecture when they require inspiration for new ideas. In fact, more and more architects are integrating high-tech LEDs into their plans for new buildings, thus joining a worldwide shift toward energyefficient lighting. Experts forecast that LEDs, energy-efficient and maintenance-free sources of light, will also become the first choice for indoor lighting.

But now back to vehicle lights. Another crucial muse for Audi light designers is nature. “Nature often shows us the way, allowing us to learn just how simply and effectively processes can be executed,” explains the light designer Georgi. The most recent example of this is the taillights we developed for the Audi A1 Sportback concept, which was recently unveiled to the world in Paris. Audi designers were inspired by the lattice structure of a dragonfly’s wing. The design of the taillights impressively demonstrates the relative simplicity required to construct a very large, stable and light surface. Georgi says: “With our bionic design, we transferred this constructional conception to the Audi A1 concept’s taillights, which needed to be lightweight because they are integrated in the tailgate.” The headlights of the Audi Shooting Brake Concept are an additional illustration of nature permeating Audi design. Reminiscent of an open pine cone, reflector shells arranged successively in concentric circles harness the light of each individual diode to create lighting which is powerful and consistent. The headlights in the middle, on the other hand, are shaped like blossoms.

Greater safety, lower consumption

Yet LEDs are capable of even more. They can also reduce a vehicle’s fuel consumption. When daytime running lights become mandatory in the European Union in May 2011, Audi models with on-board LED technology will be ahead of the competition. Drivers in a lot of European countries – such as Italy, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, and Sweden – already must use their lights during the day. As a result, just one vehicle’s conventional low-beam headlights, taillights, and license-plate illumination consume some 200 watts – which the alternator must constantly generate. By comparison, a mere 15 watts is required to power the new Audi A4’s modern LED daytime running lights, which have the added advantage of far better visibility for other road users. All in all, that equates to a decrease of about 0.2 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers and about 4 grams fewer CO2 emissions per kilometer. A statistical example clearly illustrates the significance of these figures: Thanks to this new technology, the Audi models with LED daytime running lights sold in 2008 alone will consume – during just their first year in use – about 10 million fewer liters of fuel and emit approximately 25,000 fewer metric tons of CO2.

Such arguments are persuading more and more car buyers. In addition to the striking design, the high-tech lights’ stellar energy efficiency is yet another reason to opt for them. Consequently, a majority of people who buy an Audi A3 or A4 now order daytime running lights with LED technology. This success provides a sense of validation for the engineers, design engineers, and light designers in Ingolstadt – but also calls to mind an arduous journey. “We first had to experiment a great deal before we could employ the medium of LED to achieve the lighting performance of headlights,” explains Stephan Berlitz, Head of Lighting Technology and Electronics in Ingolstadt.

The discovery of digital light

Berlitz reminisces aloud: “One day, a supplier called to tell me that white LEDs with 18 lumens per watt would soon be on the market. Suffice to say, that immediately got my attention.” Lumens per watt are the horsepower of light: They light up the eyes of light developers just as the words torque and power light up the eyes of engine experts. For the sake of comparison, an ordinary household light bulb generates about 20 to 25 lumens per watt. A modern passenger vehicle’s xenon headlights, on the other hand, are very energy-efficient and create some 80 lumens per watt. Though the 18 lumens generated by the first LED headlights in the Pikes Peak concept are old news, they created quite a stir in those days. The next generation of white high-performance LEDs will hit the market next year with a whopping 100 lumens per watt, thus surpassing the efficiency of xenon lights for the first time. This can be traced back to dramatic developments. “Light-emitting diodes are similar to computer chips. Every two years there’s an increase in output of about 30 percent,” explains Berlitz, “and we’ll soon be able to create so much light with LEDs that entirely new applications will become possible.”

Digital light, as Berlitz calls this new light technology, can be made more or less bright electronically and precisely adapted to a driver’s needs. Audi developers are convinced that future generations of headlights will react to weather conditions, a vehicle’s speed, the distance between vehicles, and potentially dangerous objects.

Intelligent light for every driving situation

Developers exploit the tininess of LEDs to realize new ideas and increase light output: They tightly bundle several light-emitting diodes to create modules known as LED arrays. These arrays are extremely flat, very compact and require much less space than conventional light sources such as halogen bulbs or xenon burners. Because of this, and thanks to reflectors as well as sophisticated electronic controls, it is possible to realize very complex lighting functions in the tightest of spaces. Cornering light, for example, has traditionally been executed via complex mechanical means in headlights.

But Audi developers envision even better things for future generations of headlights. Their motto: The right light for every driving situation. Huhn explains: “We’re striving to create intelligent headlights and taillights which think and anticipate in the interest of enhancing a driver’s safety and comfort.” For example, there are already high-beam headlights in pre-series development which will allow drivers to navigate roads at night without temporarily blinding oncoming drivers. This is made possible by a variable distribution of light: An electronic system continuously calculates the distance to any approaching vehicles to ensure that the road ahead is ideally illuminated at all times – without irritating oncoming drivers.

In addition to such successes in the field of LED technology, Audi is also pursuing the further enhancement of existing technologies. The brand with the four rings is, for example, the only European manufacturer which has resolutely switched to xenon lights that contain no mercury. “Our engineers do everything they can to champion environmentally friendly ideas. For instance, we are the only European manufacturer which uses mercury-free xenon lights. Until recently, this had been deemed all but technically impossible. But following our triumph, the EU recently banned xenon which contains mercury as of January 2012,” says Huhn. LEDs typically contain no mercury and thus tend to lend themselves to environmentally friendly disposal.

Trend toward individualized light

LEDs also present new opportunities for interior lighting. Similar to interior architecture, lighting scenarios are imaginable which would make it safer to operate the vehicle at night, render the interior considerably roomier, or impart a certain atmosphere.

The optional interior lighting package with ambient lighting in the Audi A8 quite simply raises the bar. The true ingenuity of the ambient lighting of the A8 lies in the possibilities for customizing the interior lights. The driver can dim the light and configure various lighting profiles via the MMI. These profiles respond as appropriate to certain driving situations – when a vehicle’s interior is illuminated by lighting within cities, for example, or becomes dark on unlit rural routes.

When it comes to the lighting in vehicle interiors, developers are confronted with few limits. Safety and comfort are top priorities. Berlitz explains: “Think of a mountain hut at night. As you’re passing through an alpine meadow, you spot the warm light glowing through the hut’s windows. The light triggers that same cozy sensation you feel when you arrive home.” We want future Audi models to elicit that same exact feeling. Berlitz adds: “Just imagine: You press a single button on your remote control and the entire vehicle springs to life. The ‘headlight eyes’ awaken and an inviting light fills the vehicle’s interior as if to say: Welcome home!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Audi R8 V10 becomes first all-LED car

January 4, 2009 The order books have opened for the 196mph Audi R8 making it the first car in the world with all-LED (light emitting diode) headlamps, daytime running lights and turn indicators. LEDs are the headlight of the future due to their power, homogenous light distribution and the agreeable, daylight-esque colour and Audi can rightfully boast a technological edge with headlights four times more energy efficient than halogen headlights in addition to having a practically indefinite service life. LEDs can be made more or less bright electronically and hence able to be precisely adapted to conditions. In the future, headlights will react to variables such as weather conditions, speed and the distance between vehicles. Audi already has a pre-production headlight which offers exceptional visibility at night without irritating oncoming drivers, by measuring the distance of the approaching vehicle and adapting the shape of the beam continuously.

The LED headlamp of the Audi R8 is the first representative of a completely new generation of headlamps using only light emitting diodes which in itself reduces CO2 emissions. An interior light package including LED footwell lighting, light and rain sensors and LED engine compartment lighting also comes as standard.

Dr. Wolfgang Huhn, Head of the Light and Visibility Department at Audi, explains: “A lot of people initially viewed this development as a mere marketing gimmick. Yet everyone who has seen these lights in action is not only astonished by the excellent output but also thrilled with the homogenous distribution of light and the agreeable, daylight-esque colour of the light.”

Audi’s LED initiative first surfaced at the 2003 North American International Auto Show when it first presented the Pikes Peak quattro concept study with the world’s first fog lights equipped with high-performance light-emitting diodes.

Integrated into the broad bumper as striking strips of light, the fog lights were a sensation not merely in a technical sense. The strip-shaped lights were also aesthetically pleasing and very popular with the public.

The 12-cylinder Audi A8 went into series production soon afterwards as the world’s first vehicle with LED daytime running lights. High-performance light-emitting diodes as a light source for headlights had never previously been seen. Huhn added: “Audi blazed trails with LED technology. And even though we’re years ahead of our direct competitors, this field continues to bear tremendous potential for us. Our research counts on the ‘Vorsprung durch Technik’ typical at Audi and no one can imagine our designs without it.”

Lumens per watt are the “horsepower” of light. For the sake of comparison, an ordinary household light bulb generates about 20-25 lumens per watt. A modern passenger vehicle’s xenon headlights, on the other hand, are very energy-efficient and create some 80 lumens per watt.

The first LED headlights in the Pikes Peak concept generated 18 lumens while the next generation of white high-performance LEDs hit the market this year with a whopping 100 lumens per watt – surpassing the efficiency of xenon lights for the first time.

“Digital light” can be made more or less bright electronically and precisely adapted to a driver’s needs. Audi developers are convinced that future generations of headlights will react to weather conditions, a vehicle’s speed, the distance between vehicles, and potentially dangerous objects.

Huhn concluded: “We’re striving to create intelligent headlights and taillights which think and anticipate in the interest of enhancing a driver’s safety and comfort. For example, there are already high-beam headlights in pre-series development which will allow drivers to navigate roads at night without temporarily blinding oncoming drivers. This is made possible by a variable distribution of light: An electronic system continuously calculates the distance to any approaching vehicles to ensure that the road ahead is ideally illuminated at all times – without irritating oncoming drivers.”

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Concept LED Device Gives Air Quality Alerts

A concept device by designer Yasuhiro Akama would be pretty handy to have while walking in cities. It uses different colors of LED lights to alert users to the quality of the air they're breathing.

The little clip-on gadgets would measure the quality of the air and light up either red for dirty air, white for "normal conditions," or green for clean air.

It's a little disturbing that "normal conditions" aren't considered clean air, but for urbanites, I guess that is indeed normal. For now, though, AIRNow's mashup will have to suffice.