Feature Article

Electric Lighting: Focus on Lamp Technologies

Today's dominant lighting technologies are either woefully inefficient or reliant on the toxic heavy metal mercury, but significant improvements are occurring all the time.

Electric lighting has advanced tremendously in the past few decades, yet the leading technologies in use today still generate 90% of their output as heat (incandescent lighting), or rely on the toxic heavy metal mercury to operate (fluorescent and nearly all HID light sources). Clearly there is still progress to be made.

This article provides background on electric lighting technologies, reviews the most important recent advances, and looks at where lighting is heading. The focus is on technology, not design, though the two are inextricably linked. More specifically, the focus is on lamp (light source) technologies. Lighting controls, including strategies for integrating electric lighting with daylighting, will be addressed in a future article.


Published June 1, 2002

(2002, June 1). Electric Lighting: Focus on Lamp Technologies. Retrieved from https://www.buildinggreen.com/feature/electric-lighting-focus-lamp-technologies