SDForum Presents “Clean Lighting Solutions: Lighting the Future” on July 19 (Discount Available)

SDForumOn July 19, SDForum will present the next program in its Clean Tech Breakfast Series, Clean Lighting Solutions: Lighting the Future. A summary of this program is:

There are many factors that drive sustainability. Tenants and occupants are starting to demand greener, cleaner buildings. Legislation is starting to mandate energy efficiency and a curtailment of greenhouse gas emissions. Lighting associated with commercial buildings accounts for close to 71% of overall lighting electricity used in the US. It is the largest cost component of a commercial property’s electricity bill and a significant portion of the total energy bill.

This program will feature the following panelists:

  • Mike Dauber, Battery Ventures
  • Steve Goldberg, Ph.D, Venrock
  • Carl Schlachte, Ventiva Inc.
  • Victor Westerlind, Rockport Capita
  • lModerated by: Mavis Yee, Nixon Peabody

This program will be held from 8:00 – 10:00 am at Nixon Peabody, One Embarcadero Center, 18th FloorSan Francisco, CA 94111. Thanks to our friends at SDForum, readers of Green VC can receive a $5 discount from the non-member registration price for this event.  To receive the discount, please use code "CLEAN05" when registering online.

July 2011 Clean Tech Breakfast Promo Video featuring Steve Goldberg, Venrock from SDForum on Vimeo.

Lumenergi Raises $12.7 Million in Series B Funding

Lumenergi Lumenergi, a Newark, California-based company that provides energy efficient lighting management solutions, announced today that it raised $12.7 million in a series B round of financing. The round was led by Braemar Energy Ventures and included new investor Townsend VC and continuing investors Low Carbon Accelerator Ltd. and Noventi Ventures. In addition, Dennis Costello of Braemar Energy Ventures has joined Lumenergi's board of directors.

Lumenergi said the new funds will facilitate its expansion into large-scale commercial and industrial buildings in energy-intensive regions and enable it to further develop its sales, marketing and customer service capabilities.  Lumenergi has thusfar focused on the commercial market and offers a solution consisting of a ballast and a management and control system that it states can reduce energy costs from lighting by up to 70%.

“Early on Braemar recognized the significant role lighting plays in the overall energy consumption of buildings. Lumenergi is Braemar’s fifth investment in lighting, bringing advanced control technology into our lighting portfolio,” said Dennis Costello, managing partner at Braemar Energy Ventures. “With the market for lighting controls and ballasts approaching the billion dollar mark, we see great potential for Lumenergi.“

“We couldn’t be more pleased to add Braemar Energy Ventures and Townsend VC to our team. With deep expertise in lighting, energy efficiency, grid efficiency and real estate development, their strategic guidance will be invaluable as we rapidly expand our base of commercial and government buildings. Their financial commitment underscores the relevance of controllable lighting in achieving a more energy efficient built environment,“ said Michael D’Amour, CEO of Lumenergi.

TerraLUX Announces New CEO To Accelerate Growth

TerraLUX

TerraLUX, a Boulder, Colorado-based company focusing on LED and related technology, announced today that Jim Miller, formerly Vice President Sales with Philips Lumileds, has joined the company as CEO and President.  TerraLUX Founder Dr. Anthony Catalano will continue working full-time at the company as a Director and Chief Scientist.

According to Dr. Catalano, “Jim’s track record in the LED industry with Philips Lumileds and other high tech companies makes him the perfect match to bring TerraLUX to leadership in solid state lighting. TerraLUX InSide has become a standard in quality and performance for LED Light Engines in the portable markets; our next target is the general lighting industry and Jim will lead us there."

TerraLUX was founded five years ago and received funding earlier this year from Access Venture Partners.  “Recruiting a leader like Jim Miller, speaks volumes about the strength of the TerraLUX technology base and the team he will be leading”, said David Gold, Venture Partner at Access Venture Partners.

For more information:

D.light Design Receives $6 Million in Series A Funding

D.light Design

D.light Design, a New Delhi, India-based social enterprise that is developing lighting solutions to replace the use of kerosene lanterns by families who don't have adequate electricity, announced earlier this month that it secured $6 million in Series A financing.  This financing was led by Nexus India Capital and included participation from Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Garage Technology Ventures, the Mahindra Group, and social funds Acumen Fund and Gray Matters Capital.

D.light Design's mission is to replace every kerosene lantern in the world to provide everyone access to a basic human need: safe and bright light. By 2017, the company is aiming to have improved the lives of 150 million individuals.  The following interview of D.light Design CEO Sam Goldman provides some additional background on the company:

D.light introduced its first lighting products earlier this year.  The company's products are being sold in India and Africa, with market tests ongoing throughout the world.  One of these products – the Nova – is shown below.  It can be charged via AC or solar power (click the image for additional product information).

D.light Design: Nova

"D.light has a mission to eliminate kerosene lamps in our villages by providing high quality solar-based solutions at price points significantly below comparable products," said Sandeep Singhal, Partner at Nexus India Capital. "The productivity improvement from their solution is huge and we are very excited to be backing a team that has the commitment and leadership to fulfill this mission."

"We are delighted to receive the financial support of such a renowned team of investors. This is a high vote of confidence in our products and our business model," said D.light Design CEO Sam Goldman. "We look forward to better serving the millions of households who deserve and aspire for an increasingly higher quality of life – with greater economic and educational opportunities – that modern lighting provides."

For more information:

U.S. Department of Energy’s “L Prize” to Award Up to $20 Million for Innovations in Lighting

L Prize

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced details on the Bright Tomorrow Lighting Prize competition (the "L Prize").  The L Prize is the first government-sponsored technology competition designed to encourage the development of high quality, high efficiency solid-state lighting products to replace the common light bulb. The competition will award up to $20 million in total cash prizes in three competition categories and may lead to other benefits for the winning products such as federal purchasing agreements.

The Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) of 2007 authorizes DOE to establish the Bright Tomorrow Lighting Prize competition and defines three categories of prizes.  An excerpt from the legislation that defines these categories follows:

SEC. 655. BRIGHT TOMORROW LIGHTING PRIZES.

(b) PRIZE SPECIFICATIONS.—
(1) 60-WATT INCANDESCENT REPLACEMENT LAMP PRIZE.—
The Secretary shall award a 60-Watt Incandescent Replacement Lamp Prize to an entrant that produces a solid-state light package simultaneously capable of—
(A) producing a luminous flux greater than 900 lumens;
(B) consuming less than or equal to 10 watts;
(C) having an efficiency greater than 90 lumens per watt;
(D) having a color rendering index greater than 90;
(E) having a correlated color temperature of not less than 2,750, and not more than 3,000, degrees Kelvin;
(F) having 70 percent of the lumen value under subparagraph (A) exceeding 25,000 hours under typical conditions expected in residential use;
(G) having a light distribution pattern similar to a soft 60-watt incandescent A19 bulb;
(H) having a size and shape that fits within the maximum dimensions of an A19 bulb in accordance with American National Standards Institute standard C78.20–2003, figure C78.20–211;
(I) using a single contact medium screw socket; and
(J) mass production for a competitive sales commercial market satisfied by producing commercially accepted quality control lots of such units equal to or exceeding the criteria described in subparagraphs (A) through (I).

(2) PAR TYPE 38 HALOGEN REPLACEMENT LAMP PRIZE.—
The Secretary shall award a Parabolic Aluminized Reflector Type 38 Halogen Replacement Lamp Prize (referred to in this section as the ‘‘PAR Type 38 Halogen Replacement Lamp Prize’’) to an entrant that produces a solid-state-light package simultaneously capable of—
(A) producing a luminous flux greater than or equal to 1,350 lumens;
(B) consuming less than or equal to 11 watts;
(C) having an efficiency greater than 123 lumens per watt;
(D) having a color rendering index greater than or equal to 90;
(E) having a correlated color coordinate temperature of not less than 2,750, and not more than 3,000, degrees Kelvin;
(F) having 70 percent of the lumen value under subparagraph (A) exceeding 25,000 hours under typical conditions expected in residential use;
(G) having a light distribution pattern similar to a PAR 38 halogen lamp;
(H) having a size and shape that fits within the maximum dimensions of a PAR 38 halogen lamp in accordance with American National Standards Institute standard C78–21–2003, figure C78.21–238;
(I) using a single contact medium screw socket; and
(J) mass production for a competitive sales commercial market satisfied by producing commercially accepted quality control lots of such units equal to or exceeding the criteria described in subparagraphs (A) through (I).

(3) TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY LAMP PRIZE.—
The Secretary shall award a Twenty-First Century Lamp Prize to an entrant that produces a solid-state-light-light capable of—
(A) producing a light output greater than 1,200 lumens;
(B) having an efficiency greater than 150 lumens per watt;
(C) having a color rendering index greater than 90;
(D) having a color coordinate temperature between 2,800 and 3,000 degrees Kelvin; and
(E) having a lifetime exceeding 25,000 hours.

DOE has now provided the specific technical requirements for the first two prize categories. Further information on the third prize category (21st Century Lamp) will be provided by DOE at a later date.

The EISA legislation authorizes up to $20 million in total cash prizes for the three categories.  The exact amount of the cash prize for each category will be determined based on DOE Congressional appropriations and supplemental contributions from foundations and utilities. DOE will contribute up to $1 million to the cash prize purse, subject to enactment of the FY 2009 appropriation. In addition, potential opportunities for future federal purchasing agreements, utility programs, and other incentives for winning products may far exceed the value of the cash prize.

Proposals for the competition will be accepted for each product category until a winner is declared in each category, or until 24 months have elapsed since the first award in a given category, whichever comes first. In each category, all prizes will be awarded to the winner, the first entrant to successfully meet the full competition requirements. Up to two additional qualifiers may be determined to have met or exceeded the L Prize criteria, and may be eligible for program partner promotions.

For more information:

Luminus Devices Closes $72 Million Round of VC Funding

Luminus Devices logo

Luminus Devices, Inc. a Billerica, Massachusetts-based company that develops and manufactures high-performance solid state light sources, announced on Monday that it has closed a $72 million round of venture capital financing.  This round was led by Braemar Energy Ventures.  Other participants in this round included CMEA Ventures, Paladin Capital Group, and Luminus’ previous investors, which include Battery Venture Partners, Argonaut Private Equity, Stata Venture Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, DFJ-New England and Eastward Capital.

Luminus Devices’ patented PhlatLight technology (Photonic Lattice Light), based on research from MIT, is a new type of solid state light source that combines the benefits of both LED and laser technology.  The company states that among the benefits of its PhlatLight technology are environmental benefits such as reduced power consumption needs as compared to other lighting sources.  This is illustrated in the following chart of power needs for lighting projection televisions (PTV): 

Luminus Devices chart

In its funding announcement, the company stated that this funding highlights the strategic shift it is undertaking to offer its technology to a broader set of markets than the TV and display industry it has previously served. According to Udi Meirav, CEO of Luminus Devices:

It’s a big vote of confidence in our company and in the future of solid-state lighting, and we are thrilled to have such strong backing from Braemar, CMEA, Paladin, and our other new investors, as well as the continued support of our earlier investors.  This investment enables a new phase in the growth of our company, and it will provide us with the resources to expand our product line, serve new markets and deliver the full value of our technology to our growing roster of customers.

For more information: