Inventors Create Pill-Sized Bulb That's Brighter Than a Street Lamp
Alternative lighting solutions are all the rage right now. People are finally realizing that a big, clunky incandescent light bulb, which gets so hot it burns your hand, is not a particularly efficient way to illuminate a room. But despite the quick rush to change over to compact fluorescent (CFL), concerns over the potential health impacts and mercury content in CFLs are driving folks to look for other alternatives, and a little bulb the size of a Tic Tac may be the solution.
The bulb, filled with argon gas, pumps out an impressive 140 lumens (the standard way of measuring the efficiency of a bulb) of light per watt. More lumens per watt means that more of the electricity that is pulled in to the bulb is turned into light instead of being wasted as heat.
The current champion in the lighting world, the LED, can pump out 70 lumens per watt. Compact fluorescent blubs clock in at around 50 per watt, while the standard incandescent bulb offers a measly 15. On top of that, one tiny little argon bulb can crank out 35,000 lumens, plenty enough to act as a street lamp.
Is this the future of lighting? That, of course, depends on cost and lifespan.
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