New Energy Star Rules Will Change LCD TV Designs (July 30, 2009) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s Energy Star Program Requirements for TVs: Version 3.0, are guidelines that impact on-mode power consumption limits for televisions.

epa_sealThe new U.S. EPA guidelines call for the energy consumption of some televisions to be cut by as much as two-thirds by 2013, compelling the LCD TV supply chain to implement changes in its products and components.

The EPA believes Version 3.0 of the regulation can reduce energy demand by millions of kilowatt hours per year. The EPA guidelines for TV on-mode power limits will grow more stringent over time with Tier-1 limits now in effect, moving to more restrictive levels during the Tier-2 and Tier-3 phases in 2010 and 2012 respectively.

These guidelines are likely to spur major changes in television design as brands move to maintain the coveted Energy Star label on their sets. The larger the television size, the more power consumption should be cut to comply with the guidelines.

Television power consumption is soaring mainly due to the transition from CRT to LCD display technology, as well as the resultant shift to larger screen sizes.

Previous global standards, including earlier versions of the Energy Star regulations, focused on reducing power consumption only during the off and standby modes.

However, the new requirements focus on the on-mode, in which televisions consume the most power. The Energy Star Program Requirements for TVs: Version 3.0 is the first such standard to go into effect, but will be followed by similar guidelines in other countries.

One very effective approach to address the need for on-mode power reduction will be the adoption of LED backlighting, especially the direct-lit type, which will can allow for up to 40 percent or more power savings in a typical 30-inch-or-larger LCD-TV.

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