The Bright Future of LEDs

The Bright Future of LEDs

20 December 2022

The LED industry has grown significantly since its inception late last century. The number of applications benefiting from LED technology continues to grow year-on-year, and we’re only just scratching the surface.

With 2022 drawing to a close, we begin to think about what the year ahead will bring for LEDs and what innovations and developments we’ll see. In this article, we will explore why the LED industry will thrive in the years to come.

led roof

LED Replacing Fluorescent

In support of the UK’s commitment to the environment, there is an increasing need for specific international legislation restricting harmful chemicals in electronics. Initially known as EU RoHS Directive 2011/65/EU, this has been revised with an increased focus on supporting LED lighting.

The latest revisions created in March 2022, consisting of 12 amendments to end the exemptions allowing mercury in lamp manufacture. For example, in August 2023, T5 and T8 fluorescent lamps will be banned.

Fluorescent lighting was previously a popular choice for lighting a workplace but came with several harmful side effects for people and the environment. The benefits of LED lighting have created a situation where businesses are required to migrate from harmful fluorescent to sustainable LED.

2023 will significantly transform many workplaces as they change their existing lighting setups to LEDs. Human-centric designs will cross over with these developments as facilities managers wish to create the optimal work environment that considers productivity and human well-being.  LEDs won’t just be popular for interior applications, the outdoor lighting market with continue to grow as exterior public spaces are improved.

Outdoor LED Lighting

outdoor led lighting

With minimised light pollution, improved energy efficiency and impressive lifetimes, LEDs have been a popular choice for outdoor lighting applications for a number of years.

LED also significantly reduces maintenance and associated costs  - areas like Surrey have already implemented LED lighting in their streetlights through a £19.9 million investment. Over three years, 89,000 lights have been changed and are predicted to save 65% on energy consumption. Hackney is also committed to a similar plan involving a £1.25 million investment to update 1,124 existing street lights and install 2,394 new LED lanterns that should be finished by early 2023.

The benefits of LEDs for long-term outdoor lighting, such as public streetlights, are becoming increasingly well-known. Their longevity and lower power consumption make them an effective method of reducing the country’s effect on the environment and creating a greener nation. With the success of these two areas, there is increasing momentum to convert all street lights nationwide to LED in 2023 and beyond.

LiFi and IoT


LiFi (light fidelity) is wireless communication technology which relies on light as a power source. Like wi-fi, this system enables users to transfer data, but instead of radio signals, LiFi uses light, specifically encoded photon bursts with LEDs. This data transfer relies on a visible line of sight to transfer the data but provides many benefits, such as increased data share speeds. This light based data transfer system has been around for over a decade, but the relatively new introduction of IoT has given it new life.

LiFi is particularly useful when combined with an increasingly popular business tool, the internet of things (IoT). For example, manufacturing facilities are predicted to invest heavily in IoT as it assists facility control and monitoring through a system of interconnected devices controlled from one location.  LiFi can handle this increased data traffic more efficiently than wi-fi and connect substantially more devices.

As more businesses invest in LiFi solutions and demand for global initiatives in the ICT sector to improve the efficiency of city operations 2023 should see the rise of LiFi innovations.

Human-Centric Lighting Setups

office LED lighting

Natural light has a significantly positive effect on people and supports our body’s natural circadian rhythms. These rhythms promote our general mental and physical well-being during a 24-hour cycle, and disrupting it will have harmful effects.

A CRI (colour rendering index) measures a light’s breadth on the spectrum, with CRI 95 or higher similar to beneficial natural light. We all know the cleansing effect of walking on a pleasant day under a warm sun, and these effects are medically measurable. The most well-known result is how blue light will suppress melatonin, disrupting sleep and wakefulness.

There are four aspects of artificial lighting that affect people’s health:

  • Balanced Spectrum: Natural light has a balanced spectrum that covers the entire visible, but artificial sources may be focused on specific areas of the spectrum.
  • Aesthetics and CCT: The colour temperature of your lighting system will affect a person’s mindset if chosen incorrectly. For example, replicating natural mid-day light will help with alertness.
  • Consistency: The sun provides a constant light during the day, but some artificial sources will flash at incredibly high speeds. Whilst not visibly perceptibly, this flickering can affect people.
  • Distribution: Artificial light tends to be more focused on a specific area than natural light's infinitely broad coverage.

These human-centric setups are already successful in medical environments such as care homes and hospitals. Patients and residents with limited access to natural light are provided with a simulated light cycle replicating a natural day and assisting with their natural circadian rhythm.

Bad lighting designs can affect people unexpectedly, promoting mental issues that can develop into physical ones with enough exposure. However, with innovations, LED lighting manufacturers can customise their lighting to meet all these factors positively. Therefore we expect to see more lighting setup designs to support the circadian rhythm in 2023.

Many businesses, councils, and industrial facilities choose LED lighting as a cost-effective, long-lasting, practical lighting system. With innovations developing new applications for LEDs every year, 2023 is already looking like a fantastic year for the industry. Forge is an expert at manufacturing custom LED solutions, working with our clients from project inception through design, prototyping, and final mass manufacture. If you have any questions about how we can assist your new next project, contact us, and we’ll happily discuss it.

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