Drop-in LED bulb could save the energy of 210 power plants

Few standardized electrical fixtures are as common worldwide as the T8 fluorescent tube lamp. They've been around since the 1930s, and it's estimated that there are now twice as many T8s as there are people on the planet (!). The fluorescent tube is reasonably efficient, but maintenance costs can really add up. The fixture has a costly electronic ballast box, which can fail, which is why you often see lamps with dim or flickering T8 tubes in stores and offices.

The Philips Master LEDTube InstantFit lamp solves this problem by offering the first true drop-in LED replacement tube. While this isn't the first LED substitute for a T8 lamp, it is the first that doesn't require rewiring the fixture to bypass the old fluorescent tube electronic ballast. That might sound like a small thing, but it means that the lamps can be switched over to LED by a maintenance worker in a couple of minutes, instead of requiring the work of an electrician. When you've got hundreds of lamps in a large supermarket or other business, that can mean the difference between changing the lamps in an afternoon, and taking on a project lasting several weeks.

Once installed, the Master LEDTube InstantFit lamps save about 41% in electrical costs over an equivalent fluorescent tube. The 40,000 hour life also means far fewer bulb replacements, and an end to those flicking and buzzing lamps that look like something from a bad horror film. No price or availability date have been announced, with Philips just saying "soon." Check out the video below for more info.

Philips Lighting, via Treehugger

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