Photometric Testing

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Integrating sphere at the PNNL Lighting Metrology Lab.
In collaboration with the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) and other standards organizations, DOE has been instrumental in defining new standards for photometric testing of SSL lamps and luminaires. In particular, early work by the CALiPER program helped to inform the development of IES LM-79. This foundational document describes the conditions and procedure for photometric testing of SSL lamps and luminaires.

More recently, DOE has focused on photometric testing of LED color-tunable products, which present a unique challenge for established methods of characterizing lighting performance; because their output is continuously variable, important characterizations—such as power draw, efficacy, output, and color characteristics—must be measured more than once. In 2015 CALiPER released a report on Photometric Testing of White-Tunable Luminaires, describing how eight white-tunable luminaires were tested at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. This data has subsequently informed a working group of the IES Testing Procedures Committee, which is attempting to standardize a procedure for this type of product. At heart, the key is balancing test burden with test accuracy: measuring performance at more points of the variable output can increase the accuracy of the reported values, but is more costly.

Metrics and Test Methods