TOGGLED: Money Saving Led Fluorescent Tube Replacement Lights, Made In Michigan
As Featured in the WWJ950 Newsradio Technology Report - June 20, 2013 SPOTLIGHT
The energy-saving future of commercial lighting is here, and the payback in energy savings can be less than a year.
Troy-based TOGGLED is now selling lighting tubes packed with LEDs that fit in the same fixtures as old T-12 or T-8 fluorescent tubes.
At a newly reduced price of $36 each, these high quality, commercial grade tubes are now price competitive with imported LED products. In comparison to fluorescent lights they use less energy, last years longer, reduce maintenance costs, provide a better quality of light, and eliminate the mercury waste stream inherent to fluorescent lighting.
The price reduction was realized through cost improvements provided by TOGGLED’s automated manufacturing operations coming online – a multi million dollar, one-of-a-kind, fully automated proprietary production line process capable of producing well over 1 million tubes annually.
So how long to payback? That depends, said TOGGLED president David Simon.
“Payback is dependent on two things -- how many hours per year am I using my lights, and what my utility costs are,” Simon said. “Michigan has about national-average utility costs -- we’re not at the top of the charts like California and Hawaii and Manhattan island, but we’re not cheap power either, like the Tennessee Valley Authority. Based on that, if people are using their lights half the time or more, on average it’s pretty easy for us to find a payback period of two years, and if they’re using their lights all the time, especially if they have older T-12 systems, we’re seeing paybacks of under a year, which is really fast.”
Financing is also available for TOGGLED lighting facility retrofits, which can be structured in a way that the energy savings capture can fund the installation payments, Simon said.
Best of all, for Michigan-based companies at least, is that the tubes are designed, manufactured and supported right here in metro Detroit, at TOGGLED headquarters in Troy.
“We see ourselves as an anchor company to attract more LED manufacturers and ancillary businesses here in Michigan, helping establish the center of the solid state lighting industry in Michigan,” Simon said. “It really should be here. Look at all the strengths Michigan has, in product development technology, tooling technology, supply chain logistics and knowing all the things it takes to do manufacturing. Michigan knows how to do that stuff better than anywhere else in the world. There are some really good reasons this ought to happen in Michigan and not anywhere else.”
The intellectual property and technology that drives TOGGLED was developed by its Michigan-headquartered parent company Altair, a global provider of simulation technology and engineering services founded in 1985. Altair’s concepts and patents to use LED technology to replace fluorescent lights originated back in the 1990s. At that time, however, LED prices and performance were not where they needed to be
to compete with fluorescents, Simon said, “it was not that promising.”
Nevertheless, Altair sought patent protection for the technology -- and when LED technology improved through the 2000s, Altair dusted off the technology and spun off their LED lighting business, known today as TOGGLED. Today, TOGGLED’s patent portfolio now has 34 patents issued, with another 50-plus pending, and an active intellectual property licensing program.
To see how TOGGLED can light up your business and reduce your facility lighting costs by as much as 40%, visit www.toggled.com.
Reporting Matt Roush, CBS Detroit