Bayer MaterialScience Enters Joint Development Agreement with Lighting Science Group for LED Lighting Advancements

08 Oct 2008 • by Natalie Aster

PITTSBURGH -- As businesses, governments and individuals continue to look for ways to reduce their energy consumption, light emitting diode (LED)-based lighting has taken off as one of the most sought-after technologies driving these efforts. To advance its position on the cutting edge of plastics for LED technology, Bayer MaterialScience LLC (BMS) has entered into a joint development agreement with Lighting Science Group (LSG), a leading developer and manufacturer of intelligent and energy-efficient LED lighting solutions.

LED-based lighting is now an emerging popular choice for exterior lighting applications, including streets, parks, outdoor industrial, parking lots and convenience stores. This type of lighting - which previously was rated for a few years of life - now can exceed 50,000 hours of illumination, which is approximately 14 years on a 12-hour burn cycle.

"I am excited that this strategic alliance with Bayer MaterialScience will bring truly sustainable innovations to the market," said Govi Rao, chairman and chief executive officer of Lighting Science Group. "This unique alliance combining the lighting application expertise and LED system integration know-how of LSG with best-in-class polycarbonate resin technology from Bayer MaterialScience is driven by our mutual interest in creating a sustainable ecosystem," added Rao. "Enhancing energy efficient solutions with environmentally friendly materials, while improving the quality of light, is one of our goals, and I expect this alliance with Bayer MaterialScience will result in significant advances in plastics that will transform the lighting industry."

BMS has developed grades of its Makrolon® polycarbonate and Bayblend® PC/ABS resins specifically for these demanding, high-brightness LED applications. One of these is Makrolon LED2245, which offers high light transmittance, low haze, improved thermal resistance and the impact strength of Makrolon. BMS is also introducing a line of post-consumer recycle content resins that can be utilized in non-optical lighting components.

"This partnership with Lighting Science Group is the perfect pairing of the top-of-the-line in LED plastics with the industry's most advanced LED integration capabilities," said Gerald DiBattista, market segment leader, IT, Electrical/Electronics Polycarbonates, BMS. "Our portfolio of Makrolon polycarbonate resins for LED lens and optical materials has stood up under even the harshest testing conditions, and consistently outperformed other polycarbonate materials in retaining high transmission. More new products are under development as well, including a 5VA clear material and a metal insert molding grade. Also, our post-consumer recycle content grades add an even more ‘green' aspect for other components of the LED housing."

"Bayer MaterialScience's growth strategy is clearly evident in this partnership," said James Chrise, senior vice president and general manager, Bayer Advanced Resins Division, NAFTA. "We want to grow with companies that stand apart in a growing market, and Lighting Science Group is a perfect example of one of these companies."

The properties of Makrolon polycarbonate resin help to make industrial LED-based lighting applications impact/vandalism resistant with lower maintenance and better directional use of light.

"Some lighting engineers have grown leery of using plastics as opposed to glass in LED lighting infrastructure applications due to the yellowing, aging and cracking they experienced as side effects of sub-optimal plastic materials selected for their lower cost," said Fred Maxik, chief scientific officer, Lighting Science Group. "By using high-quality Bayer materials and Lighting Science lighting solutions, customers will soon see the next generation of advanced optics using polycarbonates that meet and exceed the utility of glass."

About Lighting Science

Lighting Science Group Corporation designs, manufactures and markets LED lighting solutions for consumer and professional applications that are environmentally friendlier and less costly to operate than traditional lighting products. LSG's patented and patent-pending designs in power management, thermal management, controls and micro-electronics are engineered to enhance lighting performance, reduce energy consumption, lower maintenance costs and eliminate the use of hazardous materials. LSG designs and manufactures ready- to-use LED lamps and luminaires, as well as provides customized lighting solutions for architectural and artistic projects. LSG has offices in New York, New York; New Jersey; Sacramento, California; Satellite Beach, Florida; Dallas, Texas; Tokyo, Japan; Goes, The Netherlands; and Buckinghamshire, England.

About Bayer MaterialScience

Bayer MaterialScience LLC is one of the leading producers of polymers and high-performance plastics in North America and is part of the global Bayer MaterialScience business with nearly 15,400 employees at 30 sites around the world and 2007 sales of 10.4 billion euros. Business activities are focused on the manufacture of high-tech polymer materials and the development of innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction, medical, and sports and leisure industries. Our inorganic basic chemicals unit produces chlorine and related essential products for the chemicals industry.

About Bayer Corporation

Bayer Corporation, headquartered in Pittsburgh, is a subsidiary of Bayer AG, an international health care, nutrition and high-tech materials group based in Leverkusen, Germany. In North America, Bayer had 2007 net sales of 8.1 billion euros and employed 16,800 at year end. Bayer's three subgroups, Bayer HealthCare, Bayer CropScience and Bayer MaterialScience, improve people's lives through a broad range of essential products that help diagnose, prevent and treat diseases; protect crops and enhance yields; and advance automobile safety and durability.

Source: Bayer MaterialScience LLC