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NAVSEA: LED Fluorescent Tube Replacement

Energy Focus, Inc., on August 4th 2011, received a $23M contract (N65540-11-D-0009) to design, qualify and then supply the US Navy with LED lights.  A portion of the order was LED fixtures already qualified and manufactured at EFOI.  The remainder required a solution to a legacy 2’ fluorescent fixture which is the major general shipboard lighting fixture for the Fleet with over 1 million lamps in total.  EFOI’s solution is the M1 Intellitube.  It uses half the power of the legacy system and lasts the entire time at sea.   Over 20,000 M1 IntelliTubes have been shipped and installed on 15+ surface fleet ships, including major retrofits to the USS Chafee and USS Preble as part of the contract to generate over $6M in revenue. The awarded contract is the single largest known procurement of LED lights by the federal government.

The tremendous design, engineering, development and qualification effort required by the contract cannot be overstated. The timeline of product delivery was shortened to 4 months per ship availability requirements.  The lamp was approved to meet all of the MIL-SPECS in the Navy’s MIL-DLT-16377 standards for lighting and the SSL supplement. The most difficult requirements include the shock, Electro-Magnetic Interference (EMI) and photometrics all confirmed by third parties. For shock, the fixtures mount is hit with a 400 lb hammer 9 times from varying heights and orientations.  For EMI, the light must be perfectly electrically silent so that it doesn’t act as a beacon at any frequency and must be able to withstand a direct radar sweep.  For photometrics, the illuminance is dictated at +20/-10% for all angles in 5 degree increments. The M1 Intellitube met all these requirements after the cross-disciplinary team lead by the CTO, worked almost exclusively on these challenges for months.  Additionally, the M1 Intellitube is a retrofit lamp, which works with line power or any of the legacy ballasts.   The M1 Intellitube contains intelligence to discriminate the electrical environment in which they are situated and adjusts operating parameters to match.

The M1 Intellitube is “Buy American Act” and “Trade Agreements Act” compliant meaning it is made in the USA with 51+% of the content from America.  The success of the M1 Intellitube and contract means that 7% of the Fleet will now use LED lights, saving 1.8 Megawatts translating into 1 million gallons of diesel per year, advancing the “Green Fleet” initiative. Additionally M1 Intellitube allows for a 40 % reduction in the Total Ownership Cost over the fixture’s lifetime by eliminating the maintenance / storage burden.  The M1 Intellitube adds a retrofit solution to the 70 other EFOI LED fixture solutions already on Navy ships.  The M1 Intellitube is the only qualified retrofit solution for the most prevalent fixture in the Navy.

Other Projects include:  (look for future updates and details)

  • NSRP: All Platform Affordable LED*
  • DARPA: Explosion Proof
  • DARPA: Circadian Berth
  • Army: IR Flare
  • NASA: Hazardous Location*
  • DARPA: HEDL Close-out
  • Tech Solutions: T-5 FLU Replacement fixture development*
  • NAVAIR: Landing Light
  • Army: Day lighting System*
  • XXXX: Lighting System

* = Active

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