Seoul Semiconductor Co. (SSC) introduced its P4 LED that emits 240 lumens at 1A. SSC also claims the P4 has the highest efficacy at 100lm/W @ 360mA. Efficacy is the ratio of visible light to electromagnetic radiation that includes factors such as heat. Compared to SSC’s P4 LED, a fluorescent light source has an efficacy of 70lm/W while an incandescent source has only 15lm/W. SSC is developing even brighter LEDs with a 135lm/W in the works by 2007 and a 145lm/W by the first quarter of 2008.
Brighter LEDs mean the reduction of the number of LEDs to maintain a certain level of brightness. Currently, for large LCD TVs that incorporate LEDs, there are hundreds even thousands of LEDs. LED longevity and performance shrinks as operating temperatures increase. So, to maintain that 50,000 hours that consumers expect from LCD monitors, notebook PCs and LCD TVs, the LEDs need to be run at about 50% capacity resulting in doubling the number of LEDs and higher prices. So, announcements from companies such as SSC is good news. Good news, yes, but LEDs have a long way to go to supplant CCFLs as the king of the source of light for backlights.
In my opinion, LED advantages such as it being a solid-state device that increase durability and with better design flexibility than CCFLs can be taken advantage of in areas such as public and residential lighting as well as automotive lighting.