July 6, 2022
As of July 1, the nonprofit DesignLights Consortium® (DLC) has completed the transition to the newest version of the Solid-State Lighting (SSL) Technical Requirements (V5.1) — a policy designed to increase efficacy and improve quality of light and controllability of qualified fixtures and lamps. Any products that have not been updated to meet V5.1 requirements have been removed from the Qualified Products List (QPL).
Under the SSL V5.1 requirements, almost all products are now dimmable and must report on integrated controls. Dimmability is a component for capturing savings beyond those possible with LEDs alone and enables comfortable light levels for occupants. In addition, performance data must be reported on attributes such as color and discomfort glare based on light distribution, allowing QPL users to better distinguish characteristics needed for selection and installation. By requiring disclosure of integrated controls, the policy makes it easier to identify and select these products.
Since LED luminaires installed today may last for 10 years or more, strengthening controllability requirements locks in potential energy and cost savings for years to come. Not doing so can sacrifice these potential savings.
The DLC released two versions of its SSL policy, V5.0 and V5.1, in tandem February 2020. V5.1 became effective July 1, 2020; however, the DLC gave extensions and grace periods for updating products to V5.1 in response to challenges precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Manufacturers were given from July 2020 through April 15, 2022 to submit applications to update their products to keep them on the QPL — a resource utilized by more than 200 energy-efficiency incentive programs across the U.S. and Canada. (Manufacturers may submit new V5.1 applications at any time.)
While some energy-efficiency programs offer additional grace periods for incentivizing V5.0 products, all luminaires on the DLC’s SSL QPL are now compliant with V5.1 quality of light requirements, including spectral quality and glare. (Note that V5.0 products will remain viewable on the QPL by searching under “delisted”).
More information about SSL V5.1, including manufacturer and industry guidance and resources, is available here.