By Richa Chakravarty
The LED lighting market in India, which was worth US$ 73.3 million in 2010, will continue to grow at a CAGR of 45.53 per cent till 2015. Experts forecast that in 2012, over 60 per cent of the total demand for LEDs will be for streetlight applications and the railway sector. LED lamps and luminaires are exhibiting the strongest growth trends among all lighting technologies. Thus, LED lighting is expected to grow significantly in the future, replacing traditional lighting technologies, but its penetration largely depends on standardisation, government support, awareness and affordability. This was stated at the 2nd Annual Executive Congress on LED Lighting, hosted by Frost & Sullivan’s Automation and Electronics Practice recently, in association with Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI), to address the challenges faced by LED lighting suppliers and end users. The event drew eminent dignitaries from both the lighting industry and the government. Many members from the industry were felicitated for their efforts in developing the technology and boosting the LED market in India.
Says Niju V, deputy director, Automation and Electronics Practice, Frost & Sullivan, South Asia & Middle East, “The excitement around LED lighting applications is helping it to move towards newer user segments, thus expanding this market considerably. The major challenges, like the absence of standards and the lack of awareness, are being mitigated by the efforts of the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) and the LED industry to facilitate its adoption in low usage application areas. The phenomenal growth of the market is expected to make it viable for local manufacturers to achieve large commercial volumes, which in turn will drive down prices significantly. As energy conservation initiatives gain more prominence, this industry is all set to acquire a star status in the next couple of years.”
LED lighting market has its share of challenges. LED lighting installations require more complicated designs, spanning the optical, thermal and electronics domains. LED lamps continue to be quite expensive compared to conventional lamps; they rely on imports, as current economies of scale prevent indigenous manufacturing. The absence of uniform standards for different applications is also restraining LED adoption and is paving the way for sub-standard cheaper imports to flood the market.
The highly competitive factors affecting the Indian lighting market are price advantage and brand image. LEDs are garnering significant interest and playing a vital role in LEED certified buildings in India. The BEE is working with lighting associations to define standards, and is testing protocols and certifying parameters for different lighting applications. Star rating labels are being made mandatory for luminaires and lamps for indoor commercial and outdoor lighting applications.
Emphasising the benefits of LEDs in conserving energy, Dr Sandeep Garg, energy economist, BEE, informs, “Despite the increasing awareness about the benefits of LED lighting, absence of uniform standards for different applications is restraining its adoption. However, the government is paying more attention in this area and the Bureau of Indian Standards will introduce standards for LEDs by December 31, 2011. Only after the standards are introduced, will BEE escalate its initiative to boost the technology in its 12th plan.”