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Consumer Technology

Published on August 9th, 2012 | by James Ayre


LED Bulb Cost Will Drop by Half to $11 in 2020

August 9th, 2012 by  

LED bulb cost is projected to drop by half by 2020. Technological innovation is expected to shift the surrounding thermal management, drivers, and optics as the price of the main LED package falls, says Lux Research.


Innovation in thermal management, drivers, and optics is helping to lower prices, halving them to $11.06 in 2020, according to Lux Research.

“Costs of the central LED package will fall by more than 70% to $2.14 in the next decade, constituting 19% of the bulb costs in 2020. However, to drive overall costs lower – and ensure adoption in a market still dominated by incandescent and CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps) – other system costs need to keep pace.”

The analysts studied the key LED cost stack components of a 60W incandescent equivalent LED bulb as well as the technologies that may accelerate cost and lead to LED bulbs’ market potential. Among their findings:

“Thermal management will yield modest cost gains. Thermal management is the biggest target for cost reduction past the package. Active thermal management technologies such Nuventix’s SynJet will lead to cost savings over aluminum-based solutions, but only from 2017.

“Dimmable drivers lead to energy savings. Dimmable drivers are priced at a premium to non-dimmable ones because they enable precise control of the light output and lead to energy savings. Innovation in this area will bring about a 1% cost saving in 2020, boosting the performance of the LEDs overall.”

LEDs look like the future of lighting. These innovations and cost improvements will just speed up the transition to that future.

Source: Lux Research
Image Credits: LED via Wikimedia Commons

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About the Author

's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

  • OK, then in 2020, I might buy them.

    • Bob_Wallace

      Wonder how much money you will waste in the next eight years?

    • Rob

      I just bought a bunch of http://brightgreen.com/products/dr700-retrofit/ for $49 each. My current halogen downlights cost about $25 each per year to run, the new globes about $4.50. The light is definitely brighter then the current halogens so if anything I am looking forward to them fading a little.
      So with the power savings even with no further power price increases they will save me about $160 each over the next 8 years at a cost of $49, then again if you want to wait 8 years that’s your choice.

      • Halogen bulbs? That’s an energy waster. Try the CFLs., that are also cheaper than LEDs.

        • Rob

          Why would I do that when I just pointed out LEDs leave me about $120 better off over 8 years? and LEDs don’t expose me and my family to toxic mercury that CFL’s contain.

  • Bob_Wallace

    Amazon has multiple 60 watt equivalent LEDs on sale for less than $20.

    ‘Big name’ companies such as Phillips and GE are selling for more, but someone is making LEDs closing in on the $11 price that we shouldn’t expect for another eight years.

    I’m betting Lux Research is estimating long.  Emerging tech and hundreds of billions of dollars profits to be made.  I’d bet that they have estimated much long.

  • Sirsparks Electrical

    $8 to $12 is all I pay NOW, from China.

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