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Introduction

GEs incandescent lamps trace their ancestry to the worlds first practical electric bulb, invented by Thomas Alva Edison, founder in 1879, of the company that became General Electric Company. More than a century of research and development later, the present range of GE incandescent lamps represents the state of the art of lamps for residential and commercial use, as well as special purpose lamps for decorative or display applications. In an incandescent lamp, light is generated by heating the filament to incandescence. The hotter the filament, the more efficient it is in converting electricity to light. However, when the filament operates hotter, its life is shortened so the design of each lamp is a balance between efficiency and life. This is why lamps of equal wattage may have different lumen ratings and different life ratings. Incandescent lamps of similar size are commonly available with different wattage ratings. The fixture wattage limit should not be exceeded. While fluorescent lighting is the most common type of general purpose lighting found in commercial settings, a wide range of options are available. Incandescent Incandescent lamps have relatively short lives (typically 1000 to 2000 hours of use) and are the least efficient of common light sources. In fact, only about 15 percent of the energy they use comes out as light the rest becomes heat. However, they produce a pleasant color that is similar to natural sunlight. Incandescent lamps are the least expensive to buy but the most expensive to operate. Reduced-wattage incandescent produce about the same light output but consume less energy than standard bulbs.

Basic Terms in Lighting System and Features


Lamps
Lamp is equipment, which produces light. The most commonly used lamps are described briefly as follows:

Incandescent lamps:
Incandescent lamps produce light by means of a filament heated to incandescence by the flow of electric current through it. The principal parts of an incandescent lamp, also known as GLS (General Lighting Service) lamp include the filament, the bulb, the fill gas and the cap.

Reflector lamps:
Reflector lamps are basically incandescent, provided with a high quality internal mirror, which Follows exactly the parabolic shape of the lamp. The reflector is resistant to corrosion, thus making the lamp maintenance free and output efficient.

Gas discharge lamps:


The light from a gas discharge lamp is produced by the excitation of gas contained in either a tubular or elliptical outer bulb. The most commonly used discharge lamps are as follows: Fluorescent tube lamps (FTL) Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL) Mercury Vapour Lamps Sodium Vapour Lamps Metal Halide Lamps

Incandescent A-Lamps Figure 2. Edison (E26) Medium Screw Base

Diminutive screw-base for these lamps; however, because the lamp shapes are designed to resemble candle flames, the entire category often is referred to as candelabra lamps. The lamps are intended for use in decorative fixtures, including chandeliers, pendants, wall sconces and lanterns, and nightlights. Figure 3 illustrates several popular examples with their lamp designations.

Given their intended decorative function, candelabra-type lamps generally are not characterized by light output, which can be negligible for lower-wattage lamps (e.g., <20 lm for a 4-W C7 lamp). These lamps are designed to operate on line voltage only, with wattages ranging from 3 W to 60 W for most candelabra-type bulb shapes.

Performance of Incandescent A-Lamps and Decorative Lamps


Lamp ratings from three major lamp manufacturers were surveyed for Caliper benchmarking purposes, covering approximately 250 A-lamps (A15 and A19) in 25-W, 40-W and 60-W versions. A-lamps rated higher than 60 W were not included because LED replacement lamps currently lack the light output to compete with higher-wattage incandescent products. Manufacturer data were surveyed also for approximately 200 smaller decorative incandescent lamps in a variety of formats (e.g., C7, BA9, BA9.5, B10.5, B13, CA8, F10, and F15), in wattages ranging from 4 W to 25 W. Higher-wattage versions were not included because LED replacements currently compete only with products at lower light output levels.

Incandescent Lamps

Common uses and advantages


Incandescent lamps are commonly used in desk lamps, table lamps, hallway lighting, closets, accent lighting, and chandeliers. They provide good color rendering and, in fact, serve as the color standard by which all other lamps are measured. Incandescent lamps are easily dimmable. These lamps have the lowest initial cost and require no ballast. Other options to consider Incandescent lamps are the least efficient lamps on the market. If they are used a large percentage of the year there may be a cost-effective replacement.

For general lighting new fluorescent luminaires may make sense. Since fluorescent lamps provide much more light for the same energy input fewer luminaires may be needed. If dimming ballast is used then the fluorescent lamps may be dimmed, although not generally as low as incandescents.

For desk lamps, table lamps, or some other luminaires a good choice may be compact fluorescent lamps. These provide approximately the same light output as incandescent lamps up to 100W and are generally not dimmable. The size is generally larger; however, so compact fluorescents will not fit all places where incandescents are in use.

Light Output
Predictably, light output (i.e., luminous flux) generally increases with rated wattage for incandescent lamps. Table 1 presents the ranges and averages of manufacturer-provided values for lamp light output for decorative lamps and A-lamps, along with corresponding Caliper benchmark data. In general, Caliper testing has corroborated manufacturer-rated light output for these lamp types.

Efficacy
Luminous efficacy of incandescent replacement lamps typically is not reported by manufacturers but can be calculated by dividing lumen output ratings by power ratings. Manufacturer data for light output were not

available for all surveyed incandescent lamps, particularly for lower-wattage decorative products. However, as shown in Table 2, Caliper test results support the efficacy values calculated from available manufacturer data.