GE hopes to initially offer 2x the energy efficiency of incandescents and ultimately 4x the energy efficiency

The incandescent light bulb has been coming under fire from two sides in recent times. On the one side, we have LED lighting looking to encroach into incandescent territory with brighter light and drastically reduced power consumption. On the other side, we have seen that fluorescent technology is being embraced increasingly by consumers.

General Electric (GE) hopes to fight off its rivals with a reinvigorated incandescent technology. GE's Consumer & Industrial’s Lighting division is developing an incandescent light that boosts the energy efficiency to near-fluorescent levels. GE also claims that the increased efficiency will not come at the expense of brightness, color and light quality.

"In addition to offering significant energy savings comparable to CFLs, the 21st century version of Edison’s bulb provides all the desirable benefits including light quality and instant-on convenience as incandescent lamps currently provide at a price that will be less than CFLs," said Kevin Nolan, VP of Technology for GE Consumer & Industrial. We and other lighting manufacturers have been aggressive in developing and marketing CFLs. But consumers want more options and we plan to respond to their needs and deliver environmental benefits, too."

The high efficiency incandescent (HEI) bulbs would replace current household incandescents ranging from 40 to 100 watts. The initial HEIs are expected to be at least two times as energy efficient as traditional incandescents. As the technology progresses, GE is targeting four times great efficiency which would make it comparable to fluorescents.

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