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California Title 20 Mandates Higher Efficiency for Metal Halide Luminaires

California Title 20California new Title 20 standards, which went into effect January 1, 2010, created new energy efficiency standards for 150-500W metal halide light fixtures used in indoor and outdoor applications. These fixtures may not be manufactured in the State of California unless they meet the new standards.

Indoor fixtures: First, no probe-start ballasts are allowed. Next, the fixture must comply with the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which imposes a minimum acceptable efficiency of 88% for its pulse-start ballast.

But then Title 20 goes beyond EISA 2007, requiring one of four options.

1. Minimum ballast efficiency of 90% for 150-250W lamps and 92% for 251-500W lamps. Basically, by choosing a higher-efficiency ballast than that required by EISA 2007, the Title 20 requirement can be satisfied.

2. A ballast with an efficiency of 88% or greater AND an integral occupancy sensor with a default setting to automatically reduce lamp power through dimming by at least 40% within 30 minutes or less of an area being vacated.

California Title 203. A ballast with an efficiency of 88% or greater AND an integral photocontrol to automatically reduce lamp power through dimming by at least 40% in response to daylight contribution to light levels.

4. A ballast with an efficiency of 88% or greater AND a relamping rated wattage (stated on a permanent, pre-printed factory-installed fixture label) with only one of these four bins: a) 150-160W, b) 200-215W, c) 290-335W or d) 336-500W (if the fixture is able to operate 336-500W lamps, it must be prepackaged and sold together with at least one lamp per socket with a minimum lamp mean efficacy of 80 lumens/W.

Basically, the ballast must be even more efficient than EISA 2007 or use lighting controls. The intent appears to be to push end-users towards use of 150-500W electronic ballasts, which currently represent 2% of total HID ballast shipments, according to 2009 NEMA data. Alternately, users can stick with magnetic ballasts that offer a compliant level of efficiency or control capability. Magnetic ballasts would be most desirable for applications where electronic ballasts are not yet available or where the alternative has a form factor requiring modification of the luminaire. In addition, electronic ballasts are still proving themselves in extreme environments in which magnetic HID ballasts have already proven themselves.

Of course, there are exceptions, which negate the minimum ballast efficiency requirements for certain metal halide lighting systems if they meet any of the following conditions:

1. Luminaires that use regulated lag ballasts.

2. Luminaires that use electronic ballasts that operate at 480V.

California Title 203. Luminaires that a) are rated for use only with 150W lamps, b) are rated for use in wet locations [as specified by NEC 2002, Section 410.4(A)], AND c) contain a ballast that is rated to operate at ambient air temperatures above 50C, as specified by UL 1029-2001.

Outdoor fixtures: Same as the above, but outdoor fixtures that may comply with Option #3 must comply with at least one of the other options.

Future requirement: Starting January 1, 2015, indoor 150-500W metal halide fixtures must comply with Option #4 (wattage bin ranges) in addition to at least one of the other compliance options.

For more information, click here.

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