A number of exhibitors showed off LED tube lamps that can be installed in existing fluorescent lamp sockets at the LED/OLED Lighting Technology Expo, which took place in Tokyo from April 15 to 17, 2009.
KFE Japan Co Ltd, for example, showcased Taiwan-made LED fluorescent lamps, which it started renting in March 2009. The company is currently renting 40 and 120cm long models for a minimum monthly fee of ¥135 (approx US$1.37) per lamp. And it will enhance the lineup and offer 30, 60 and 240cm long models from this fall.
Although LED fluorescent lamps are already available in the market, there was an increase in the number of such products that can be used with existing fluorescent lamp sockets. Many of the previous products need electric works to remove the existing sockets and reconnect wires for installation. However, if the existing sockets do not need to be removed, it is very easy to install LED fluorescent lamps.
For example, TriGem Japan Corp's LED fluorescent lamps are compatible with about 200 kinds of sockets being used in Japan and Korea and can be installed without electrical work if the fluorescent lamp sockets are glow or rapid start type. They also support some inverter type sockets, the company said.
The products of Korea-based Teklux Co Ltd, which will be released by Japanese limited liability partnership Eco-Consortium LLP, can be used with the existing sockets except those for HF type fluorescent lamps.
The power consumption of the "TL120," which corresponds to a 40W 120cm-long lamp, and the "TL60," which is a substitute for a 20W 60cm-long lamp, are 23W and 13W, respectively. They will be priced at ¥18,000 and 10,000, respectively. Full-fledged sales of the products will now begin in Japan.
Koha Co Ltd will also launch a 20W-equivalent glow start type product and a 40W-equivalent rapid start type product for ¥17,000 and 10,000, respectively. Also, Toshin Electric Co Ltd released a 40W product that supports both glow and rapid start sockets (inverter type sockets are not supported).
However, some people are raising concerns about those products.
"Their power-saving effect is lessened as a result of the power consumed by the sockets, and their safety has not been verified yet," according to an LED lamp manufacturer. Some manufacturers are recommending that customers remove the existing sockets for such reasons.