The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) suspended the L Prize PAR38 Competition effective June 13 and no entries will be accepted.
According to DOE, the competition sets reach targets for industry, and current LED PAR38 products on the market fall far short of reaching the rigorous L Prize targets, making it unlikely DOE will receive a qualifying entry in a reasonable amount of time. DOE cannot lower the efficacy target because it was set by Congress. DOE will continue to monitor the PAR38 market for performance and price improvements and consider reopening the competition at a later date.
The PAR38 competition requirements call for exceptional performance by LED products that can meet the most demanding applications for reflector lamp beam performance, color quality and energy efficiency. Products capable of meeting these specifications will be appropriate for retail displays, museums and galleries, hotel lobbies and other settings requiring high-intensity spot lighting with excellent color rendering, while slashing energy use by 85 percent and lasting 10 times longer than halogen lamps.
The PAR38 competition requirements were revised in July 2013 to include changes to the allowable beam angle, a dropped requirement for production of specific number of units and a change to domestic content requirements.