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2006-05-08
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Editorial: SSLS 2006 This Week in Taiwan
 
... Don't expect anyone who's a true shaker/mover in the international solid state lighting (SSL) supply chain to be in their offices this week. They'll all be at the Ambassador Hotel in Hsinchu, Taiwan at the fourth annual international Solid State Lighting Suppliers Forum, SSLS 2006, the event formerly known...
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Commentary...
SSLS 2006 This Week in Taiwan

 
... Don't expect anyone who's a true shaker/mover in the international solid state lighting (SSL) supply chain to be in their offices this week. They'll all be at the Ambassador Hotel in Hsinchu, Taiwan at the fourth annual international Solid State Lighting Suppliers Forum, SSLS 2006, the event formerly known...

View the full story at the bottom of the current news page, or if this is a back issue, go here...

TVs to Succeed Handsets as Biggest Driver of SSL Industry Growth
LIGHTimes Staff

May 8, 2006...The proliferation of flat panel televisions, mainly liquid-crystal display (LCD) TVs, will be a key driver for growth in the solid state lighting (SSL) industry, according to the latest report from Strategy Analytics. LCD TVs will surpass mobile handsets as the most significant growth driver for the industry, the company says. The latest Strategy Analytics report, "Now Showing on a Television Near You: LEDs are the Ones to Watch," predicts that LED-based backlighting will account for almost 25 percent of the total LCD TV market in 2010. In the report Strategy Analytics points out that the television market is experiencing a major transition as conventional cathode-ray tube (CRT) technologies are replaced by flat-panel technologies such as LCDs, plasma displays, and microdisplay-based rear-projection TVs (RPTVs). LIGHTimes SecondPage members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Intematix and BridgeLux Form IP Alliance
Scott McMahan

May 8, 2006...How can a company be sure that all of the components in its products both purchased and licensed from other companies do not infringe on any other patents? Two companies in solid state lighting have proposed an answer to this all to common concern of IP validity and enforcement. Intematix of Freemont, California USA, and BridgeLux (formerly eLite Opto; Ref: Coverage) of Sunyvale, California, have arrived at what they hope is the answer in the form of an intellectual property alliance. The two companies jointly announced the formation of the Intellectual Property Secure Lighting Alliance (IPSLA). According to the companies, the IPSLA is a network of solid state lighting component suppliers who believe that respecting IP is essential to accelerating the adoption of solid state lighting (SSL).

A company using components produced by another company can either take the company’s word for it that the component do not infringe on any patents, or the company can hire an expert patent lawyer to ensure that each and every component within the its products does not infringe any patents on any level. Taking a company's word for it, can be a risky proposition from a legal standpoint. The solution, from Intematix and BridgeLux is to have an alliance in which each member certifies that qualified patent attorney’s have reviewed their products and processes and found them to be non-infringing on all levels. That way when one company in the alliance purchases components from another company in the alliance, it can be sure that the component’s technology is non-infringing without having to pay a lawyer to do the research and wait for the results. LIGHTimes SecondPage members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Visopia Leverags PerkinElmer LED in Concept Car Headlamp
LIGHTimes Staff

May 8, 2006...PerkinElmer’s RGB LEDs were selected for in the multi-element headlamp of the Scion Fuse 2006 concept car. Visopia, a lighting design company of Los Angeles, California USA, selected the PerkinElmer product called the Aculed for the headlamp design. According to Visopia, the All Color Ultrabright LED (Aculed) provided a multiple-chip-on-board (COB) design to create the headlamp. “PerkinElmer's Aculed is a distinctive product that combines the power, colour and size qualities we needed to create the concept car's distinctive signature circuit board design reflecting Scion's key philosophies of style, versatility and surprise,” said Carlo Quinonez, Lighting Designer for Visopia.“The Aculed's precise white point selection and an infinite palette of colour lighting have enabled us to create the perfect balance of ambience and functional lighting.” Visopia News Release

Color Kinetics to License Patent Portfolio to Martin Professional
LIGHTimes Staff

May 4, 2006...Color Kinetics (CK) announced that the entertainment lighting company, Martin Professional of Aahus, Denmark, will license its products for intelligent LED lighting. Under the licensing agreement, Martin will be permitted to utilize CK’s patent portfolio for lighting color control devices and systems. Martin, a $160 million dollar per year company specializes in automated entertainment lighting. Its premier products are the MAC series of moving headlights used in high profile concerts world tours, television studios, and theatrical performances. The company has reportedly entered the market of dynamic lighting environments. Martin hopes to use Color Kinetics’ patent portfolio to in its first line of LED-based lighting systems. LIGHTimes SecondPage members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

LED Backlighting Market to Grow; Manufacturers to Increase in Number
LIGHTimes Staff

May 4, 2006...Taiwan-based backlight unit makers (BLUs), Forhouse, Coretronic, and Radiant Optoelectronics have jumped into LED backlight development, according to Digitimes. Forhouse said the company expects to customers to validate their design for their 7-inch BLU this month. And the company plans to begin shipping to the segment later this quarter, according to Francis Pan, chairman of Forhouse. Pan added that Forhouse is also developing notebooks that use LED backlighting. Digitimes reported that Radiant previously stated it will finish development of LED backlighting for notebooks in the first half of 2006. LIGHTimes SecondPage members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Will the Real NEC Please Stand Up?
Scott McMahan

May 4, 2006...The idea of stealing intellectual property is nothing new. Counterfeit, inferior products abound around the world. Cheap knock-offs of everything from Rolexes to things in our realm such as LEDs can be easily obtained. However, one company in the home electronics arena took counterfeiting to a new level. They attempted to make an entire counterfeit company bearing the name NEC. This is not just a case of someone putting up a website trying to imitate an NEC website through phishing. According to an article in the New York Times, in mid-2004, managers at the real NEC began receiving reports of blank CD and DVD disks and pirated keyboards bearing the NEC name were reportedly being sold in Beijing and Hong Kong, a New York Times article stated.

After an extensive investigation requiring thousands of man-hours, NEC officials uncovered a company that was not just making inferior copies of their products, the company was attempting to convince the world that it was NEC. For a while it worked. The company had set up a parallel NEC brand with 50 factories in China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. The fake company “licensed” products, its workers carried NEC business cards, and it signed contracts and supply orders in the company’s name. The real NEC is was tight-lipped because of pending litigation. Hopefully, we don’t see this in the solid state lighting or compound semiconductor industries. But if there is money to be made, it will probably happen eventually. We have on occasion covered NEC; If we covered the fake company, it was not intentional. This my be something to look out for in the future, company identity theft...

New Type of LED-Based Runway Safety Lights Tested
LIGHTimes Staff

May 4, 2006...While runways have been using LED lighting for years, there are still certain lighting functions on and around runways where LEDs have not replaced conventional lighting. The United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has reportedly installed a special runway warning light system at the Prescott Municipal Airport in Prescott, Arizona. The prototype system, which is still being tested, is intended to warn pilots so they do not run into other planes while on the ground. The system notifies pilots that they are approaching a runway hold line. LIGHTimes SecondPage members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

Rennaissance Lighting Introduces evo Product Line
LIGHTimes Staff

May 3, 2006...Rennaissance Lighting has introduced their evo solid state product line which the company says solves the problem of color consistency and light quality changes over time. Additionally, the company says their device reduces the appearance of the pixilated look that most other LED light sources display. Once LEDs are lit, the light output and color temperature degrade. The rate of this degradation varies from one LED to another. According to the company, their patented IntelliBlend technology overcomes the pixilation in most current LED lighting fixtures by mixing and blending multiple LED light sources in an integrating chamber to produces a single light source. Then, additional optical elements can be added to create a variety of light distributions for different applications. The IntelliBlend technology dynamically monitors and continuously calculates the lumen output and color temperature of the light. If any LED fades, begins to lose light output, or experiences color-shifting, "sleeper" LED cells are activated in some LED arrays to automatically adjust the light in order to maintain the architect's and lighting designer's original lighting concept. LIGHTimes SecondPage members login for more. Guests can view membership details.

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Commentary & Perspective...

SSLS 2006 This Week in Taiwan

May 8, 2006...Don't expect anyone who's a true shaker/mover in the international solid state lighting (SSL) supply chain to be in their offices this week. They'll all be at the Ambassador Hotel in Hsinchu, Taiwan at the fourth annual international Solid State Lighting Suppliers Forum, SSLS 2006, the event formerly known as BLUE. That's where virtually all SSL business of key importance will be underway. Anyone who's attended our earlier Blue events knows that nothing beats the face-to-face dynamics that you experience at this very unique industry forum.

The list of illuminaries on the speaker agenda (and VIPs who have registered to simply sit in the audience and listen) is truly outstanding. This year's get together begins Tuesday morning, May 9th, with a first-of-its-kind workshop led by Jeffrey Miller of the International Association of Lighting Designers. Jeff will help LED manufacturers and packagers especially, understand precisely what it is lighting designers require in the way of reliability, standards, and new product design. Jeff keys in on the human factors we sometimes forget, which are the real drivers of architectural lighting. Coming out of this workshop, attendees should be better equipped to help bridge the gap between what those on the supply side of SSL think, feel, and believe...and what the end users really want, need, and demand. (Ref: last week's McD Report: Supplier's Challenge)

Following that is a second morning workshop organized by Taiwan SSL experts, which will give attendees an opportunity to exchange news and views on Taiwan's current SSL programs and initiatives. Instructing will be Professors Jeng-Yang Chang, Ching-Cherng Sun, and ITRI director Daniel Y. Chu. This is an excellent opportunity for those selling into, supporting (or competing with) the Taiwan market to get to know one another better.

The SSLS 2006 exhibits, which run throughout the event, will open at noon on Tuesday. Then the main conference gets underway at 1 pm with opening greetings by our three conference co-chairs, Dr. Yung-Sheng Liu, senior advisor of the Taiwan Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), George Mueller, founder chairman of Color Kinetics, and Robert Walker, president & CEO of BridgeLux (formerly eLite Opto). Each will be heard later in sessions in more detail, as speakers and panel moderators. SSLS 2006 runs through noon Thursday, May 11th.

Drs. Liu and Walker have kindly co-chaired and have been featured speakers at previous BLUE events. George Mueller, who delivered our keynote address at last year's meet, was such a hit that he volunteered to do a repeat and updated performance at this year's SSLS. His keynote talk this year, which is slated for 4:30pm, just before the big Grand Banquet Wednesday evening, is titled The Progress and Promise of Intelligent Solid-State Lighting: Taking LEDs from Niche to Mainstream. We expect a full house for that talk and the banquet, which is being generously sponsored by Aixtron.

I'd like to take this opportunity to publicly thank our primary sponsors, which include: Aixtron, Veeco, Tecore, Rubicon, BridgeLux, KLA Tencor, Intematix, Epistar, Dow Corning, and Monocrystal. Our gold sponsors include, Forepi, Accent, Chroma, SemiLEDs, Praxair, Epichem, Suss MicroTec, and NuSil and our media and contributing sponsors are Strategy Analytics, our own LIGHTimes and SolidState Lighting.net, and IOP's Compound Semiconductor magazine and LEDs Magazine. Without them, the industries we serve simply wouldn't be as robust, responsive and relevant. Any time you see a sponsor's name and logo on an event, in a print magazine, or online you know it means they've given their wholehearted support to that information conduit and we all appreciate their ongoing support of our respective efforts and enterprises.

Take a minute to ask yourself... Why is this all so important? What's at stake? Why all the hype? Start by scrolling down the SSLS 2006 agenda for yourself to see precisely who the featured speakers are at SSLS 2006. Scan the topics and read the explanations of their talks and panel discussions. We designed the agenda to literally tell the story of the current state of the solid state lighting industry. That story starts with overviews by our first keynoter, Bob Steele of Strategies Unlimited, followed by Asif Anwar of Strategy Alalytics. Supply and demand. It all boils down to supply and demand. Note that on Tuesday afternoon at the close of the regional reports, we have the pleasure of hearing from Ms. Wu Ling, from mainland China. She's the general secretary of China's Directorate of Solid State Lighting. It's exciting to me to know that a country as huge as mainland China actually has a directorate of SSL. And their emphasis is on SSL as a crucial means of helping preserve our precious and brittle global environment. As it says in the tease for Wu Ling's SSLS 2006 talk... "China is embracing what is most likely the broadest solid state lighting initiative of any government, and with good reason."

As I write this, looking out at our ranch in Texas in the USA... where we put the natural environment first and try to practice an environmentally sane and sensible lifestyle each and every day as we run Legacy Ranch as a native wildlife refuge, I got to thinking about countries like China, where huge human populations present tremendous and complex challenges. Last year, when Wu Ling kindly spoke at Blue 2005. She brought up some especially important points and told of her country's SSL alliance initiatives that I dearly wish were going on within all the world's governments. To quote her conclusions: 1) SSL is the key strategy of China's energy policy. 2) China has a huge illumination application market. 3) China's central and local government are strongly committed to the next 5 year SSL budget planning. 4) China promotes an open-door policy and mutual benefit environment. And she closed with #5... welcoming everyone to come and join China in their goals to develop SSL application industries and markets, and develop key SSL technologies. We look forward to hearing Wu Ling's 2006 update at SSLS 2006. We will be reporting on hers and other key talks.

Mainland China is the fastest growing economy in the world, and that country is clearly dedicated to incorporating solid state lighting solutions as a means of lessening their electricity demands by a considerable amount. By switching to LED lighting, projected savings by 2015 in China are estimated by Wu Ling's group to be 100 B KWh/Yr. To call attention to the needs and goals, the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games are being tagged as the "Olympics of Light." Of the many reasons VIPs from the SSL supply chain attend our SSLS meet in Taiwan each year, getting to more about the overall Asian marketplace is of prime importance, and getting to know the shakers/movers from mainland China is critical. They, with industry guidance from SSL industry professionals throughout Asia, Europe, and the USA are literally leading the solid state lighting revolution.

The three key international SSL industry meetings for our industry are: 1) Strategies in Light (SIL) in California at the beginning of each year, 2) our annual Solid State Lighting Suppliers Forum, SSLS, in Taiwan which is going on this week in Hsinchu, and 3) China's International Forum on Solid State Lighting, CIFSSL, which this year will be held July 12-14 in Shenzhen, China. The website for the meet is www.china-ssl.org. LIGHTimes and SolidState Lighing.net are proudly helping sponsor CIFSSL in July. So... as I see it, the formula for achieving success in the Solid State Lighting industry is shaping up to read: SIL+SSLS+CIFSSL. If you're at those three events, you have all you need to know. Have a great meet at SSLS 2006 in Taiwan this week, and don't forget to sign up for CIFSSL in Shenzhen City in July.

If you have questions about the solid state lighting and compound semiconductor industries or have
news or views to share, we want to hear from you! Feel free to contact us anytime.

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