Emerging lighting technologies

This page outlines how to have emerging lighting technologies accepted for use under the Energy Savings Scheme

Under the Energy Savings Scheme, the use of emerging lighting technologies in energy savings activities must achieve a reduction in energy consumption without reducing the level of service or output provided by the original lighting equipment.

What are emerging lighting technologies?

Emerging lighting technologies (‘ELTs’) are those technologies for which one or more of the following apply:

  • they are not fully developed, or have not been widely accepted by the lighting industry
  • no recognised mandatory performance, design, or efficiency standards apply
  • there is a high degree of variation between products
  • they are subject to misleading claims.

ELTs include LED lighting equipment, induction lamps, T5 linear fluorescent adaptor (T5 adaptors) and voltage reduction units (VRU). 

Applying the Commercial Lighting Energy Savings Formula to establish energy savings

ELTs are not assigned a default Lamp Circuit Power (LCP) for use in the Commercial Lighting Energy Savings Formula. Instead, the ESS Rule (Table 9 of Schedule A) requires that the:

“Proponent shall apply to the Scheme Administrator in advance for LCP value, and supply specification sheets or laboratory test reports. Control gear losses shall be included in the LCP.”

The ESS Rule (Table 10 of Schedule 1) outlines specific treatment of T5 Adaptors and VRUs, as they are not assigned Default Operating Factors.

Acceptance of emerging lighting technologies - ELT Portal

Existing Accredited Certificate Providers can apply to have emerging technologies accepted for use in specific projects in the Energy Savings Scheme.  In order to submit an application requesting acceptance for an emerging lighting technology, you must submit an application via the Emerging Lighting Technology (ELT) Portal.

The ELT Portal is a web interface which allows ACPs accredited under the Commercial Lighting Energy Savings Formula to submit applications for acceptance of ELT and to track progress of ELT applications.

ELT Portal

Where the Scheme Administrator is satisfied with the information provided, notice will be provided that the equipment is accepted for use in the energy savings project.  

The approved lighting technology values should be entered into the latest available version of the Commercial Lighting Tool to calculate your energy savings. 

Note:  the Scheme Administrator does NOT approve products.

 As such the Scheme Administrator does not publish a list of products previously accepted for use by Accredited Certificate Providers and will not consider applications from manufacturers or other agents.

Using emerging lighting technologies in the Energy Savings Scheme

The following areas must be addressed before ELTs can be accepted for use in the Energy Savings Scheme:

  1. electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and electrical safety
  2. lamp circuit power
  3. asset lifetime.

Required documentation for emerging lighting technologies103.96KB PDF FileDetailed documentation required for emerging lighting technologies including specifications, lamp circuit power, output voltage, electrical safety and electro magnetic compatibility. Version 7 - 15 January 2014

More information about each requirement is provided below.

1. Electrical safety and electromagnetic compatibility requirements

Evidence must be provided to demonstrate that electrical safety and electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) requirements have been met.

These requirements apply to lighting equipment connected to mains voltages (240V) that is considered as emerging technology to ensure that they meet:

  • the electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) requirements under the Radio Communications Act 1992 as administrated by the Australian Communication and Media Authority, and
  • the electrical safety requirements under the Electrical (Consumer Safety) Act 2004 as regulated by Fair Trading (NSW).

The electrical safety requirements that apply to your lighting equipment depend on whether the equipment is a declared or non-declared article.

Declared articles

The Electrical (Consumer Safety) Act 2004 classifies particular types of equipment as ‘declared articles’ (which includes lamp ballasts and T5 adaptors).

To sell a declared article in NSW, you must obtain an Australian Certificate of Approval from either Fair Trading (NSW), or another certification body recognised by Fair Trading (NSW) i.e. other state safety regulators, or recognised independent certifiers.

You must provide us with a copy of the Australian Certificate of Approval for your declared article for it to be accepted for use in the Scheme.

Non-declared articles

Non-Declared Articles are those types of equipment not listed as declared articles under the Electrical (Consumer Safety) Act 2004 (which includes VRUs and lamps with integrated ballasts, such as LED tubes and induction lamps).

An electrical safety certificate must be provided for your non-declared article. We will accept:

  1. electrical safety certificates from Fair Trading (NSW) or other state and territory electrical safety regulators, and
  2. JAS-ANZ endorsed certificates that comply with JAS-ANZ’s Policy 06/13 – Certification of Non-Declared Articles classified as Emerging Lighting Technologies in the NSW Energy Savings Scheme (ESS)

Testing standards required to comply with JAS-ANZ’s Policy 06/13 are available in Enclosure 1 for Policy 6/13 - Annex 1 - Product standards to be applied in issuing certifications for non-declared articles that are classified as emerging lighting technologies in the ESS.

A JAS-ANZ endorsed certificate is a Certificate of Suitability issued by a JAS-ANZ accredited certification body that displays the JAS-ANZ symbol. Please note that we will not accept electrical safety certificates issued by certification bodies that do not comply with JAS-ANZ’s Policy 06/13. For more information please visit the JAS-ANZ website. 

This requirement applies to all lighting equipment connected to mains voltages (240V), especially LED tubes, as numerous safety warnings for LED tubes have been issued by various safety bodies.  It does not apply to extra low voltage (ELV) lamps that are connected to non-integrated (i.e. physically separate) control gear.

2. Lamp circuit power

Evidence must be provided to demonstrate the Lamp Circuit Power (LCP) for each specific lamp and associated control gear combination you propose to use.  

The information you submit for your product must clearly show the LCP for the lamp and control gear combined, to show LCP as it is when installed.

Acceptable information includes independent testing, performed by a NATA lighting laboratory (or equivalent).

Note: The Scheme Administrator will determine if the information is appropriate and acceptable.

3. Asset lifetime

For all lighting using the Commercial Lighting Energy Savings Formula, including emerging technologies, asset lifetime is determined by the Nominal Lamp Lifetime and Annual Operating Hours (as per Table 10 of Schedule 1 of the ESS Rule) as follows:

  • if the luminaire, control gear or lamp and control gear are replaced, the lifetime of a product will be assigned the default value of 10 years (12 for road lighting).
  • if only the lamp is replaced, or the lamp can be easily replaced with a lamp of higher power, (e.g. for ELV Halogen MR16 or LED MR16 lamps (downlights)), or a T5 adaptor kit is used, the default value does not apply and the Nominal Lamp Lifetime must be determined.

Nominal lamp lifetime claims:

  • must be substantiated by manufacturers’ data or independent test reports e.g. showing LM80 results for LED lamps, and
  • are limited to a maximum of 30,000 hours.

Voltage reduction units

Voltage reduction units (VRUs) reduce the amount of electrical energy delivered to a lamp once the lighting is turned on, which dims the lamp.  The use of VRUs is also referred to as ‘fixed dimming’.

There is no standard reduction in energy consumption that will result from the EUE of a VRU in a lighting circuit. For VRUs to be used in the ESS, the Scheme Administrator must approve a Control Multiplier (as required in Table 10 of Schedule 1 of the Rule).

As part of this approval, details of both the technical details and the operational characteristics of the VRUs and lighting equipment must be provided.  

To calculate the Control Multiplier, the output voltage ‘V’ of each VRU must to be specified and appropriate evidence, such as independent testing, performed by a NATA lighting laboratory (or equivalent), must be provided.

The Control Multiplier will be determined as V2/2402.

Energy savings can be significantly affected by the operational characteristics of VRUs. In order to better understand your proposed VRU use, the following information should be provided:

  • types of lamps and control gear in the VRU lighting circuit
  • the process to ensure that no new inappropriate lighting equipment will be installed that will diminish the energy savings. For example, VRUs connected to lights with electronic ballasts are not eligible because they do not result in energy savings
  • the processes in place to ensure that the VRU output voltage setting is not altered if the unit is adjustable and that the bypass switch, if fitted, is kept open after installation and returned to the open position when closed for lamp replacement.


Read common questions on emerging lighting technology.

Additional Information