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Comparison Of The Promotion And Application Of LED Street Lamps Between China And The United States
- May 26, 2018 -

The United States has world-leading LED lighting technology and has many years of experience in lighting energy-saving promotion and management. The United States has 52 million street lamps and has the world's largest city lighting system. 50% are highway lights, 50% are street lights and city public square lights. The US Department of Energy began in 2009 to implement plans to replace existing street lights with LEDs. Through the summary of practice over the past few years, a consensus has been formed on LED road lighting, and steadily embarked on the development direction of economics and the use of uniform capital management.

China has the largest manufacturing capacity of lighting electrical products in the world, and the development of traffic and road systems is the fastest. The national road lighting lamp is about 35 million baht, which is the second largest in the world. In March 2004, the LED street light lit in Lin'an City of Hangzhou opened the way for LED road lighting. With the encouragement and support of the policy, the promotion and application of LED lighting has been developing rapidly in the tide of economic growth in various regions. In 2008, the Semiconductor Alliance began to implement the “Ten Thousand Cities” promotion plan, and launched the “50 million 2 million” demonstration program. . The current application expansion focuses on the road expansion support for urbanization. High-speed development has brought about world-renowned achievements, and the exposed problems have also led to reflection.

Within a decade, the global LED streetlight alone will have a market size of more than US$50 billion and is now entering its growth phase. Product design and application methods are changing with each passing day and will inevitably break through the old model. Comparing the different experiences of the two countries, complementing each other helps to promote the promotion and application of LED street lamps, guide the future construction of street lamps, product development and future market development.


Promotion of LED road lighting industry in both countries

Under the encouragement of the United States Department of Energy, the main business of local street lamps is to manage and coordinate with urban management needs, focusing on the transformation of old urban lighting systems. The purpose is to help reduce urban carbon emissions, reduce municipal expenditures, improve urban transport and livelihood management, and obtain investment returns.

Experiments began in six cities and towns across the country. The pilot cities and towns summarize different geographical locations, climate and environment, and transportation scale, which are conducive to more comprehensive experiences. On the basis of this experience, it has spontaneously expanded to dozens of other towns and cities year by year. According to incomplete statistics, the current promotion and application of LED street lamps in the United States account for about 5% of the total number of street lamps in the country. It is expected that by 2020, it will be replaced by 1/3, or 17 million tons. So far, no city has fully used LED street lamps.

Los Angeles City is the first city in the United States to implement the nation's largest LED road lighting renovation project, replacing 50% of the 210,000 LED street lights; followed by the eastern Boston city, has replaced 45,000 of the 65,000 street lights, or 25,000 baht.

New York City, which is the largest in road lighting, is relatively conservative. In 2003, it planned to replace 1,600 watts of metal halide lamps in Manhattan. The three-year returnable investment of $1.4 million was seen as a milestone in the application of LED lights.

The city of Chicago, an industrial city, weighed the benefits and decided to use less expensive ceramic metal halide lamps to transform urban lighting.

In early 2009, the Ministry of Science and Technology of China initiated the demonstration project of “Ten Cities, Ten Thousand Miles”, and the actual implementation was mostly led by local governments. More emphasis on the future of new urbanization, rather than the transformation of the old road lighting; also some provinces and cities to promote the purpose is to promote local GDP, support for local industries to compete for market, regional development is extremely uneven.

Guangdong Province, where the lighting industry is concentrated, is driven by policies that support local industries. At present, the province has cumulatively promoted the use of LED street lamps by nearly 800,000, and the demonstration section exceeds 10,000 kilometers. It is expected that in 2013, more than 1.1 million new LED street lamps will be installed, which will set off a new round of comprehensive promotion and application craze.

The city with the largest road lighting and mature urban management in Shanghai will ensure the safe and stable operation of urban road lighting and ensure the promotion of benefits. In the application of LED road lighting, it is relatively stable. As of the end of 2012, more than 5,000 LED street lamps have been piloted, accounting for only 1% of the total.

Evaluation of LED lighting application pilot promotion

The promotion and application of LED road lighting, its success or failure should ultimately be implemented to the real benefits. The direct economic benefit is mainly based on the cost of updating or newly setting, and the original system or standard design, the actual power saving effect under the same lighting conditions, the product's effective service life and reliability, and the running maintenance cost. Other application effect factors include residents and user reactions, urban security, lighting effects, and so on.

Some indirect and indirect factors related to road lighting, such as local GDP, urban image, future development, carbon emission indicators, etc., should not be included in the benefit assessment system and can only serve as a basis for decision-making on specific projects.

The investment in LED road lighting is relatively high, but the technology is changing with each passing day. The price of products is continuously declining, and the cost-effectiveness ratio is constantly increasing. Early investment has a high cost and risks of technology elimination. The actual conditions of road lighting directly affect the benefits of LED road lighting applications. The preference for pilot projects with short payback periods can reduce risks, gain experience, and play a positive role model.

The LED road lighting promotion plan in U.S. cities is generally divided into 3 to 5 stages. From the small-scale trial of the initial class, we obtain the results of the product's application experience and actual returns. After the results of the balanced return are indeed obtained, we will enter the second phase to expand the promotion; after confirming the effect of the input and output benefits of the lighting transformation, it can be completed. Rely on market funds to achieve a complete transformation of road lighting.


The Redland City of California, United States, demonstrated worth learning. The city uses a geographic information system of city management to set decision weights according to the rate of night traffic accidents in the recent three years, urban security records, night-time commercial entertainment activities and living density, and then designs LEDs according to the rational arrangement of funding sources and economic returns. The five stages of urban street lighting are to expand the promotion plan and finally achieve the goal of win-win investment income and urban management.

From the three-year summary of the pilot cities, the return on investment between cities (excluding subsidies) varies greatly. The fastest-paying city is about two years, and the longest is not more than seven years, and it has reached an acceptable level.

Pilot experience shows that LED street lighting should be preferred for retrofitting of old road lighting, and new towns need not be built once. The old road lighting system has low efficiency and high maintenance costs, but the infrastructure is complete, and the road environment and traffic flow data are also sufficient. The use of LED street lights for lighting retrofitting has lower costs, easier return on investment, and lower risk. The social effect is easy to see immediately, and it is easy to play a demonstration role. It should be the first choice.

The new project is based on the current high-pressure sodium lamp or other light source new technology on the same platform for benefit accounting, LED's advantage is relatively less significant. Moreover, the growth of road traffic in new towns must have a time course, and LED products are changing with each passing day, one-time high standard investment, high risk of technology elimination, and relatively low effectiveness.

Economic Analysis of LED Road Lighting

In order to avoid the influence of subjective factors, or due to lack of experience and errors, and conducive to the comparison and conclusion of the project. The United States DOE (Department of Energy) has proposed a set of general accounting software to facilitate download and use from the Internet.

The economic balance or revenue analysis is calculated by direct compensation between the purchase of street lamps, replacement of installation costs, and the cost of maintenance of illuminance and maintenance costs. Do not consider any indirect or potential benefits, such as environmental improvements, improved control methods, local GDP, etc.

The cost of maintaining the road lighting system in the United States is relatively high, which is equivalent to or even higher than the operating electricity cost. Due to the longevity reliability advantages of LED street lamps, the contribution of maintenance costs in economic return accounting can be saved, so that LED lighting has obvious benefits and is easy to apply and popularize. U.S. trials have shown that the return cycle of road lighting with LED street lights is 2 to 7 years, which already has the value of economic investment.

China's LED road lighting project process and the subsequent economic accounting of the project do not pay enough attention to it, and the return cycle is rarely used as the main evaluation indicator. It is often the use of design indicators to replace the actual effects of accounting, and therefore subject to subjective factors, it is easy to overestimate the benefits. Because China's labor force is relatively low, the maintenance cost saved by adopting LED lighting does not contribute significantly. The economic return of LED lighting reform mainly depends on the saving of running electricity charges, so the return cycle is much longer than that of the United States, so the product's life expectancy and reliability are required. Higher than the United States. With the current product quality, life expectancy reliability, demonstration design standards are too high, engineering products cost is too high. Most projects find it difficult to achieve cost recovery during the life of the product. Therefore, we must rely on policy subsidies at present and we still do not have the true value of social investment.

The two countries have different views on highway LED lighting

The safety of high-speed driving at night depends mainly on the visibility of the forward target, or the current vertical illumination in front of it. Current road lighting fixtures mainly provide horizontal illumination and road surface brightness. Therefore, the role of street lights is limited. Moreover, the current LED output power is not enough to meet the road illumination requirements of urban arterial roads, not to mention highways.

U.S. highways only provide lighting on roads and interchanges to remind people to slow down and help see the road.

In many parts of China, LED street lamps have been set up during the construction or reconstruction of high-speed roads. Especially in the Mainland or small and medium-sized towns, there are many super-standard designs blindly pursuing luxury. Completely ignore the basic principles of environmental protection and energy conservation, investment return and use effect. Such projects aiming to declare the development of cities or boost local GDP should not be used as a model to promote LED road lighting applications, and to avoid the imitation of small and medium-sized cities.


Calculation of lighting benefits

The efficiency of LED road lighting has different calculation methods. However, the master is composed of two major factors of engineering installation design of the lighting characteristics. Due to the different optical designs of LED luminaires, the lighting efficiency on the road surface varies greatly. Therefore, we must not use light sources or lighting effects to calculate and compare the energy efficiency of different lamps.

The more commonly accepted method is the input power of the luminaire under the same average illuminance on the road surface. However, how to calculate the average illuminance is actually very complicated. This indicator is closely related to the lamp light distribution design and the sampling scheme for measurement. Lighting installation and design must be balanced and optimized in terms of illumination, brightness, glare, project cost, actual requirements, and standard applications. A simple average illuminance calculation formula cannot exclude that the over-illumination of a local area is entered as the highest illuminance and the calculation result is improved.

In order to solve the impact of unreasonable illumination distribution on lighting efficiency, and to compare the lighting efficiency of high-pressure sodium lamps and LED street lights with different distributions, the United States LED Road Lighting Alliance proposed an FTE (fitting target lighting efficiency). The lighting efficiency measurement program. This proposal only uses the equivalent rectangular target area corresponding to the uniform illumination range defined by IES to calculate the luminous flux projected into this area as the basis for lighting efficiency calculation. Overlapping lighting or over-dark lighting are not included in the effective lighting area. The FTP value can be calculated from the IES lamp measurements and engineering design data through a unified public software, which at least avoids artificial deviations.

Empirical data shows that the FTE value of LED systems is mostly higher than that of HPS road lighting. Fully estimate the efficiency advantages that LED lighting may bring, and provide the basis for the secondary optical design of the luminaire. This is a topic worthy of further exploration in the study of road lighting efficiency.