Zhaga gets smart: Addressing the industry need for smart lighting and standardized LED components

Posted on Thursday October 6 2016, by Zhaga

This article was published in the Proceedings of the 2016 LED Professional Symposium+Expo (September 2016).

Author: Dee Denteneer (secgen@zhagastandard.org), Secretary General, Zhaga Consortium

Zhaga is an open, global, industry consortium that develops interface specifications for LED luminaires and their components, along with a certification and logo program. At the heart of the Zhaga mission is the intention to remove arbitrary variation from the industry, and to restrict those parameter values that are irrelevant for differentiation or innovation and that do not add value for component manufacturers or luminaire makers.

In this paper, we discuss the foundation of the Zhaga mission, based on empirical and theoretical research in operations and supply-chain management. Additionally, we illustrate the program using the recently completed chip-on-board (COB) interface specification, and the work in progress to define a versatile interface for smart outdoor luminaires.

The latter example clearly demonstrates that Zhaga gets smart, and that it supports the industry’s need for smart, connected and upgradeable lighting by means of standardized LED components.

Section 1 - A short introduction to Zhaga

At the core of the Zhaga mission is the intention to remove arbitrary variation from the industry, and to restrict those parameter values that are irrelevant for differentiation or innovation and that do not add value for component manufacturers or luminaire makers.

This was implicit in the original Zhaga mission i.e. to enable interchangeability of LED light engines (LLEs), and this has become more explicit in the evolution of Zhaga, focusing more broadly on component standardization [1].

In this paper, we explain the motivation for the Zhaga mission in Section 2, founded on well-established principles from operations and supply-chain management. Next, in Section 3 and Section 4, we illustrate the Zhaga mission using the recently-completed COB interface specification, and the specification-in-progress for a versatile interface for smart outdoor luminaires.

The latter example clearly demonstrates that Zhaga supports the industry need for smart, connected and upgradable, lighting by means of standardized LED components. Standardized interface specifications make the lighting industry more efficient, and efficiency is essential to break the barriers that block it from realizing smart lighting on a massive scale. The Zhaga specifications play a servient – but key – role in breaking these barriers.

We complete this paper in Section 5 with a short discussion on the required level of standardization needed in the industry, and the direction for future developments in Zhaga.

References
[1] "Zhaga Evolves: Focus on Component Standardization Drives New Book Development" by Musa Unmehopa & Tim Whitaker, LED Professional Review, Sept/Oct 2015

Section 2 - Zhaga aims to remove arbitrary variation

Section 3 - Reducing arbitrary variation: COB Book

Section 4 - Preventing arbitrary variation: Versatile interface for outdoor luminaires

Section 5 - Conclusions and discussion: Required levels of standardization