MANHASSET, NY -- GE Lighting engineers have figured out a way to nestle an instantly bright halogen capsule inside the swirl of a compact fluorescent light bulb.
The halogen element comes on instantly and turns off once the CFL comes to full brightness, thus preserving the energy efficiency of the bulb. All the workings of the bulb are contained in an incandescent-shaped glass bulb.
According to GE, the new CFLs offer eight times the life of incandescent bulbs (8,000 hours vs. 1,000 hours). The new products have low levels of mercury (1 mg) and can replace standard 60- and 75-watt incandescent bulbs or other CFLs. Currently available CFLs contain 1.5 mg to 3.5 mg of mercury.
Beginning in 2012 and continuing through 2014, standard incandescent light bulbs will not be available as a result of U.S. federal lighting efficiency standards
One hunded-watt bulbs can no longer be made in January 2012; 75-watt bulbs can no longer be made in January 2013; and 60- and 40-watt bulbs can no longer be made in January 2014. To learn more from GE's perspective see here.
If I've understood correctly from this article, the main purpose for GE's new halogen-CFL combo lamps is to "fit the sockets" for the currently installed incandescent bulbs in U.S., as standard incandescent light bulbs will not be available as a result of U.S. federal lighting efficiency standards.
So is the intension behind this product is to fill the gap?
As per my opinion this is just different version of the products being made by GE, and the limitation of CFL they are answering here is not much problematic in case of the fixed lighting cases. As average lights get started on when it stars low ambient light and by the time it becomes complete dark the CFL becomes full lit.
So there is no way to change the halogen part of the bulb in case it burns out before the CFL. Why did they not just put in LED,s? Probably not enough light, and still too expensive right now. And the LED's would probably last longer than the CFL.
Either way you look at it presents the problem of having 2 different technologies that don't match each other in lifetime.
Commercially, losing the halogen first forces a replacement sooner since the bulb would have been bought for that "instant on and brightness" purpose in the first place, or else a standard CFL would have been used.
Assuming such a bulb is changed before the CFL dies, how are they disposed of? Any dump disposal most likely would break the CFL releasing mercury, so I guess they think 1mg mercury per dumped bulb is fine.
A better idea would seem to be getting the LED lighting down in price and expanding its adoption.