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Times Square Ball Goes 'Green'

Photonics.com
Dec 2007
NEW YORK, Dec. 31, 2007 -- In the New Year's spirit of "out with the old, in with the new," the Times Square New Year's Eve Ball will be lit exclusively by LED bulbs. The "green" technology incorporated into the energy-efficient ball will result in it being twice as bright as in previous years but using the power equivalent of a single oven.
NYBall.jpg
The new Times Square New Year's Eve Ball, lit for the first time by all solid-state lighting, is more than twice as bright as the balls of previous years and capable of creating more than 16 million colors in billons of patterns. (Image: Times Square Alliance) 
The 1415-lb ball was overhauled by the Lighting business of Philips Electronics in commemoration of the Times Square icon's 100th anniversary. The ball's more than 600 Waterford crystals will be illuminated by 9576 of the company's high-power Luxeon LEDs, which replaced the 600 incandescent and halogen bulbs of the previous ball. The new ball is more than twice as bright and capable of creating a palette of more than 16 million vibrant colors and billions of patterns, New Year's Eve event organizers said, yet will use the same amount of electricity it takes to power 10 toasters.

In contrast, the first New Year's Eve Ball in 1907 was constructed of iron and wood and covered with 100 25-watt light bulbs. It was five feet in diameter and weighed 700 pounds.

"With their high-power and energy-efficient design, Philips Lighting's LEDs will allow the ball to stand out against the heavily-lit Times Square environment like never before, truly enhancing the experience for New Year's revelers around the world," said Jeffrey Straus, president of Countdown Entertainment, the company that co-produces the annual New Year's Eve event. "This year's ball will be like a jewel in the sky over Times Square."

"Because so much decorative lighting is used during the holiday season, there is a growing trend towards implementing green practices to create a more energy-efficient holiday experience," said Kaj den Daas, chairman of Philips Lighting North America.

For more information on the Times Square New Year's Eve Ball, visit: www.timessquarenyc.org/nye/nye_ball.html


GLOSSARY
photonics
The technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is the photon. The science includes light emission, transmission, deflection, amplification and detection by optical components and instruments, lasers and other light sources, fiber optics, electro-optical instrumentation, related hardware and electronics, and sophisticated systems. The range of applications of photonics extends from energy generation to detection to communications and...
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