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Carl Dalhammar

Carl Dalhammar

Senior lecturer

Carl Dalhammar

Considering optimal lifetimes for LED lamps: a mixed approach and policy implications


  • Jessika Luth Richter
  • Carl Dalhammar
  • Leena Tähkämö

Summary, in English

Ecodesign policy for energy-using products so far has tended to focus on the energy efficiency requirements, but there is increasing interest in durability requirements as well. This exploratory study analyses whether and when long lifetimes are preferable when considering the trade-offs between durability and other important parameters such as costs and environmental impacts, examining the case of LED lamps. This is an interesting product group to examine because of the improving lumen efficiency of the technology as well as the increasing emphasis on lifetimes by both producers and policymakers. This research integrates both economic and environmental approaches to examine optimal lifetimes in the case of LED lamps. The first part of the research utilised an optimised least lifecycle cost (LCC) model of LED household lamps for sale in a Swedish online market, finding that optimal lifetimes were in the range of 25000–30000 hours for these lamps. However, this modelling did not consider dynamic factors such as changing prices and efficiencies. This study took the case of 800 lumen lamps to consider these factors, utilising both LCC scenarios, varying lifetime, purchase prices, energy cost and efficiency as well as LCA scenarios, varying electricity mix and lifetimes. The mixed approach demonstrates that different conclusions can be reached depending on the approach and the assumptions used. The merits and possible future improvements of these approaches for approximating optimal lifetimes of LED lamps are discussed based on preliminary findings. Lastly, the implications of the findings for further development of durability requirements and other policies are briefly discussed.


  • The International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics
  • Centre for Environmental and Climate Science (CEC)

Publishing year







PLATE: Product Lifetimes And The Environment : PLATE Conference Proceedings



Document type

Conference paper


  • Energy Systems




  • ISBN: 978-1-61499-820-4
  • ISBN: 978-1-61499-819-8