If you’re wondering why the print edition of September Residential Lighting  is mailing later than usual, rest assured we’ve got a good reason. I know, I know — you’re used to getting print issues from us in a timely fashion. We’re very proud of that fact and have no plans to change our speedy delivery. But by waiting a little longer this month, we’re able to bring you exclusive coverage of the 2010 Lighting for Tomorrow winners.
The Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE) is kind enough to entrust us with the results of this leading-edge competition with the caveat that we must not reveal the winners in advance of their announcement at the American Lighting Assn. (ALA) Conference. This year’s event at the Encore at Wynn Las Vegas took place a bit later in the month due to the holidays, so keeping our promise required additional restraint at the post office.
If you’re already familiar with Lighting for Tomorrow, you know how significant it is to have this scoop. CEE and ALA have partnered with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), represented by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), since December 2002 to reward manufacturers for developing viable products for the residential market that incorporate the latest energy-efficient technology.
Just to paint a picture of how far this front has evolved, the first Lighting for Tomorrow competition simply wanted prototypes of CFL fixtures that consumers would actually want to buy, regardless of the light source — so lots of elongated glass to hide unsightly spirals. Entrants submitted about 150 paper designs that became 18 samples for judging, not all of which even made it into production.
Now that there are plenty of attractive dedicated CFL fixtures in production, Lighting for Tomorrow last year required that fluorescent entries be dimmable and eliminated the category altogether this year. Mission accomplished there, I suppose, so on to the solid-state stage. In addition to recognizing LED fixtures and replacement lamps this year, Lighting for Tomorrow added its first category for lighting control devices that are compatible with LED and CFL technology. The 2010 judging panel reviewed a total of 107 products — 69 solid-state luminaires, 24 LED replacement lamps and 14 lighting control devices. The rapid advancements in these same areas packed the house at this year’s record-breaking Lightfair show in Las Vegas. Today, it seems, is the new Tomorrow. And like anything worth having, it was definitely worth the wait.