Manufacturing News

BetaLED Illuminates Value of Green Design with SolidWorks Sustainability Software

Although choosing green products like hybrid cars can certainly help the environment, the real green action occurs in the product design stage.

That’s when companies such as BetaLED make far-reaching decisions about sustainability, such as:

  • Which materials will we use for this product?
  • Where will they come from?
  • Can they be reused or recycled?
  • How much energy will the finished product consume?

The environmental impact of these decisions across thousands, millions, or billions of manufactured products can be monumental.

“Our job is to make lighting products that are both economical and sustainable,” says Brian Kinnune, engineering manager for BetaLED, a division of Ruud Lighting.
SolidWorks® Sustainability software is helping us document our achievements and develop even greener products in the future. This is good for our business and good for the planet.”
The Sturtevant, Wisconsin, company has used the software to document the environmental and performance advantages of its BetaLED 304 Series commercial outdoor lighting systems.
They use less than half the carbon-producing energy than a traditional metal halide lamp while providing better illumination. They provide a 60 percent reduction in carbon footprint, acid rain-causing air acidification, and algae-causing water contamination during their operating life.
SolidWorks Sustainability software’s intuitive dashboard details a design’s expected carbon footprint, air and water impact, and energy consumption. It rolls up the probable impact of an entire designed product across its environmental life cycle.
All BetaLED components are recyclable or landfill friendly and RoHS compliant.1 In fact, BetaLED exceeds RoHS requirements by producing products that are mercury free. The lights comply with IESNA and Dark Sky standards for curbing light pollution. And life expectancy is more than twice traditional lights – 11.5 years based on around-the-clock operation, or 23 years running 12 hours per day. Combined with superior energy efficiency, this longevity makes LED a smart investment both environmentally and economically.
BetaLED recently set the industry standard for LED efficiency by shattering the 100 delivered lumens per watt (LPW) barrier. This breakthrough can reduce energy consumption by as much as 70 percent – and even more when the customer uses the dimming option.
Demand for green products
Municipalities and large commercial buyers in the lighting industry are increasingly demanding eco-friendly products. For example, Los Angeles is undertaking the largest LED lighting project ever with a goal of replacing 209,000 lights over a five-year span. The project will pay for itself in energy and maintenance savings and spare the environment 40,500 tons of carbon per year, according to the city’s Bureau of Street Lighting.
Like many lighting customers, Los Angeles is enforcing strict regulations and industry standards like IESNA and RoHS. BetaLED, a supplier for the current phase of the project, consistently meets the standards.
Preference for green products is perhaps most obvious at the consumer level. More than one in three consumers opt for green products, even in a recession, and seven in 10 Americans pay continuous attention to the green steps companies take.2 Designing green products and documenting their advantages satisfies this market need.
“Design and engineering teams play a critical role in the fate of the planet,” said Kishore Boyalakuntla, manger of simulation product management at Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. “Our goal is to help them exercise that power in ways that helps their businesses, too. SolidWorks Sustainability software makes sustainable and economical design accessible, credible, and simple.”
Other SolidWorks benefits
BetaLED has standardized on SolidWorks software for all new designs. The team has multiple licenses and uses SolidWorks Simulation for structural analysis and SolidWorks Flow Simulation for thermal analysis. The product combination helps Kinnune and his team design heat sinks that control temperature to maximize LED performance and life. Using these products, in-house 3D printing of quick physical prototypes, and an excellent group of dedicated suppliers, the company has reduced its design cycle and time to market by 60-70 percent in the past few years, according to Kinnune
SolidWorks Sustainability software is one of two versions of Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp.’s sustainable design technology. SolidWorks SustainabilityXpress,
included with every license of SolidWorks software, helps users quickly determine the environmental impact of any part.
1 The European Union’s Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive
2 The 2009 Cone Environmental Survey

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