In September of 2021, a new regulation was passed in the EU impacting LED lighting: The Ecodesign Regulation. Every aspect of this new regulation is about maintaining high standards that enhance the wellbeing of those regularly exposed to LED light sources—especially concerning light flicker.
Light flicker is defined as rapid and repeated changes to the overall brightness of a light source over time. But what effect does this have on the LED driver industry?
Places all around the world have developed regulations designed to mitigate the effects of light flicker—including the EU.
Let’s dive into the new EU Ecodesign regulation, how it relates to light flicker, and what that means for LED drivers.
In September of 2021, the new Commission Regulation (EU) 2019/2020 for light source Ecodesign went into effect. Along with regulating other aspects of lighting, such as energy efficiency, one of the most important parts of the new Ecodesign regulation revolves around light flicker and stroboscopic effects.
Light flickering can cause numerous problems, such as migraines, eye strain, headaches, and more. The new regulation aims to eliminate these problems, among other things.
The EU Ecodesign Regulation introduces a brand new method for testing light flicker: PstLM.
PstLM is a metric used to measure flicker severity in the short-term. When testing light sources on the PstLM scale, it’s important to test in a lab-style environment to ensure maximum accuracy. Tests should be performed with no other light sources nearby that could interfere with the test. The testing device is known as a flicker meter.
With the new regulation in place, lighting products testing at PstLM ≤ 1.0 are deemed acceptable to be put on the EU market.
The EU regulation isn’t the first of its kind. As light flickering has grown into a larger issue, similar regulations have popped up around the world over the past few years.
For example, back in January 2017, the state of California introduced requirements for light sources to have less than 30% flicker when operating at frequencies below 200hz.
The EU isn’t the only area where awareness surrounding light flicker has grown.
To avoid the detrimental effects of light flicker, the question is: What should you be looking for in an LED driver?
Putting it simply, you’ll want to select flicker-free LED drivers. LED drivers labelled “flicker-free” are defined as LED drivers that produce less than 5% light flicker.
Products such as GRE Alpha’s ELV Dimmable LED Driver take flicker-free LED drivers one step further, using patented technology to allow full range, flicker free dimming of LED lighting fixtures.
GRE Alpha is proud to provide flicker-free LED drivers that adhere to the new EU Ecodesign regulations (and other light source regulations around the world). Our commitment to remaining ahead of the curve also extends to our valued partners, such as EnOcean. Together with our partners, GRE Alpha continues to produce high quality, reliable LED drivers that address these flickering issues.
The GRE Alpha team is here to answer all of your questions regarding the new EU Ecodesign regulations, flicker-free LED drivers, and more. Reach out to us. We’re happy to help.
For over two decades, GRE Alpha’s diverse team of LED power conversion specialists have been building upon the latest in power management technology, providing customers with cutting edge, cost-effective, safe, adaptable and high performing LED powering products. Along the way, partnerships with innovative companies like EnOcean, Zigbee, XiCato, and Casambi resulted in advanced dimming modules featuring WIFI and BLE (Bluetooth low energy).
Now, in a collaboration with Tuya, a leading global IoT Cloud Platform that that enables smart home products to come to life, GRE is launching a new dimming module. It is among the first that supports both BLE and WIFI, so you no longer need to choose. We are very excited about this and will be sharing full details soon.
Simply put, Bluetooth allows for short-range data transfer between devices while WIFI allows devices to connect to the Internet. Together in a single dimming module, you get a complete, versatile, and user-friendly solution to turn your LED lighting into IoT connected smart devices.
As innovations in connectivity and AI shift into full gear, LED powering will become even more intelligent, connective, and efficient. Whether its dimming, color tuning, timing, linkage, sensing or voice control, GRE’s newest dimming module has what it takes to help put your lighting project on the forefront of the WIFI ecosystem.
If you have any questions about the new dimming module or any of our other high quality LED dimmers and drivers, we are here for you. Please do not hesitate to contact us. Our customer service and support teams are always eager to help.
Recently, The DALI Alliance announced the release of a brand new form of DALI lighting control: DALI+. As is the case with almost any new technology release, certain questions have come up:
"What is DALI+? What does this mean for DALI and the LED lighting industry in general?"
We’re here to outline exactly what DALI+ is and how it can benefit the LED lighting industry as a whole.
Building on lighting control features from both DALI and DALI-2, DALI+ allows these features to be controlled over wireless or IP-based networks. Existing DALI commands are used, but the pair of wires typically used by DALI-2 is no longer necessary.
What makes DALI+ different from other wireless options is the seamless transition between DALI protocols. For example, a Bluetooth to DALI gateway would have Bluetooth protocols translated to DALI protocols. Conversely, DALI+ removes the need for this process and keeps everything flowing more smoothly.
IoT, or the internet of things, brings a plethora of new opportunities for product utilization. Expanding the capabilities of various products, including lighting, by connecting them to a network has brought about a new era of innovation.
DALI+ brings wireless DALI to the table and also eliminates the need for translating between protocols. Because of this, lighting solutions will be scalable to building-wide networks and beyond, reaching multiple buildings if necessary.
With IP-based networks, IT systems and building automation services are able to be operated from one common platform. Along with leveraging existing DALI protocol features, this brings important advantages, such as:
DALI+ leaves its mark on the IoT lighting industry by streamlining many important lighting processes, such as scalability and maintenance, while also bringing DALI-specific features to wireless networks.
With DALI+ making crucial advances in the IoT lighting space, GRE Alpha is proud to be one of the few leading DALI accredited test labs in Asia. GRE Alpha also carries certain products, such as dimming modules, that are compliant with DALI-2 protocols.
"We’re looking forward to acquiring DALI+ certification as soon as the option is available," says Richard Fong, GRE Alpha CEO & Executive Director, "the opportunity to move forward with DALI and this new innovation in lighting technology excites us."
Looking for More Information on DALI+?
Contact us with any questions you may have on DALI+ or DALI in general. We’re here to help.
Constant current or constant voltage, AC or DC powering – finding the right LED drivers and dimmers can be challenging. In these two LED product catalogs, you will find detailed specifications on easy to install LED drivers and dimming modules for a wide range of indoor and outdoor lighting applications, including:
You will also find some amazing products created in collaboration with leading partners in the lighting field like Zigbee, EnOcean, BLE and DALI. Those who want to match drivers with a particular chip on board (COB) should also check out our COB matching tool. As always, our GRE team of powering experts is here to help guide you.
Xicato's Award-Winning Bluetooth Mesh Solutions Paired with GRE Alpha Dimming Modules Bring Expandable Solutions to Iconic Hotel
As you know, we place great store in finding innovative solutions for your LED lighting problems. By teaming up with leading partners in the industry, we have been able to keep the momentum going toward the full data potential of intelligent lighting control.
Today we are excited to share the news that Xicato is shining a spotlight on our constant voltage BLE protocol dimming modules (SLD-DIM-XG series). Using Xicato Bluetooth wireless mesh technology, these high-quality LED drivers feature direct peer-to-peer communication between nodes, ensuring instantaneous response to input from switches, sensors, and mobile devices without the need for hubs or a central controller.
The SLD-DIM-XG4 played an instrumental role in the Bluetooth lighting system redesign for the magnificent Gran Melia Jakarta hotel in Indonesia. It was determined that Xicato's Intelligent Gateway with open API and Bluetooth mesh wireless controls (XIG), Intelligent Drivers (XID) and GRE Alpha's XG4 dimmer was the overall best solution for the project. Xicato's Bluetooth mesh scalability meant that not only could it address the hotel's current needs, but it could also easily be reconfigured and expanded as the need arises.
GRE Alpha's XG Dimming modules are part of the Xicato's GalaXi ecosystem and runs on Xicato's GalaXi app, allowing quick and seamless installation and commissioning of lighting systems. The performance benefits and costs savings are huge:
Unlike other controllers in the market, components in GRE's XG series empower OEMs with the flexibility to choose between several vendors to mix and match various solutions based on features, form, and pricing to meet an end customer's lighting control requirements. While the original SLD-DIM-XG supports one channel, the 400-watt XG4 supports four.
If you have any questions about the SLD-DIM-XG series or any of our other high quality LED drivers, we are here for you. Please do not hesitate to contact us. Our customer service and support teams are always happy to help.
Looking ahead: Lightfair 2021, the most anticipated event in the lighting industry, will take place at the Javits Center in New York City this fall. GRE is preparing for an in-person exhibit and, if you'll also be in attendance, we'd love to catch up. Keep an eye out for further details.