The LED Industry in India

The LED Industry in India

The Light-Emitting-Diode or the LED market of India has been scaling up over the last three years, displacing many conventional technologies such as incandescent, HID and fluorescent lighting. LED’s are used as indicator lights in many devices and are increasingly being used in applications as diverse as aviation lighting, automotive lighting, advertising, general lighting and traffic signals. LED’s have allowed new texts, video displays and sensors to be developed while their high switching rates are useful in advanced communication technology. Infrared LED’s are also used in remote control units of many commercial products including televisions, DVD players and other domestic applications.

In this article we will concentrate on the Indian markets for LED and its applications in lighting. A standard 40-watt incandescent bulb has an expected lifespan of 1,000 hours, whereas an LED can continue to operate with reduced efficiency for more than 50,000 hours, 50 times longer than the incandescent bulb.

Cost and performance comparison (Source: HIS iSuppli Research, August 2011)

Type of Light LED Lamp CFL Light Incandescent Bulb
Light bulb minimum life span 30000 Hours 2000 Hours 1000 Hours
Power consumption in Watts 7W 14W 60W
Cost per bulb 690 120 12
KWh used over 20,000 hours 140 280 1200
Cost for 20K hours (at Rs. 5/KWh) 700 1400 6000
Lamps needed for 20K hour use 1 10 20
Equivalent 20K hrs rxpense lamps 690 1200 240
Total cost for 20,000 hrs. in Rs. 1390 2600 6240
Total cost for 2,000 hrs. in Rs. 760 260 624
Mechanical endurance Non-breakable Glass Glass Delicate
Use of risky chemicals None Yes None
Effect of voltage fluctuation None Some Dimming


Industry Size

China is immensely contributing to the industry that handles packaging, testing application, and is gaining grounds in the middle stream industry like chip processing and upstream industry like producing mono-crystalline LED chip processing and also epitaxial wafers. In India initiative had been left to small players in private sector with little initiative from the Government. Business in India had grown to 50% since 2008, in 2011 it was about INR 850 Crores. The global LED industry is mainly concentrated in Japan, Taiwan, Europe, America, South Korea, China, etc. Japan, the largest producer of LED’s in the world and holds 50% of the market share. Nichia Corporation is the world’s largest provider of the high-brightness LED’s.

Despite of availability of cheaper technical manpower, India has little manufacturing of LED’s and none at the mono-crystalline chip level and at the packaging chips into sources for lighting in various forms level. India’s LED’s are mostly traded from China. According to a study by Frost & Sullivan Research, the LED lighting market in India was USD 73.3 million in 2010 and will continue growing at a CAGR 45.53% till 2015. The market growth is mainly accounted due to the rise in street lighting and railway lighting applications that will account for 60% of the total demand.

Growth and demand

Growing population and rise in income provides an impetus to the growth of the LED market in India. Demand from consumer electronics has emerged as the major growth driver for this industry along with increased usage in the street lighting and growing indoor lighting applications. Moreover the better lamp life and energy efficiency and environment friendly technology is expected to contribute significantly towards market development. Global ban on incandescent lights also has had a favorable effect on the growth of Indian LED market. High initial costs are a major barrier and challenge hindering the market growth.

Overview of Indian LED Industry and applications

LED light bulbs are cost-effective options for lighting a home or office space because of their long lifetimes. Consumers are increasingly using LED’s as a replacement as conventional lighting system is causing high costs and low efficiency of available products.

LEDs used on a train for both overhead lighting and destination signage.

LED lighting is used at traffic signals and signal lights and destination signs on buses, the one with a good coloured number. Street lighting and other architectural lighting where color changing applications are essential use LED lights.

LED Lights are also used in automotive lighting on cars, motorcycles and bicycle lights where mechanical robustness and long lifetime come handy.

LED lights are also employed on poles and in parking garages and for Solar LED lights.

LED’s are used in aviation lighting, airport lighting and heliport lighting. LED airports fixtures include medium-intensity runway lights, runaway centerline lights, taxiway centerline and edge lights, guidance lights and obstruction lights.

LED’s also find variety of other applications such as backlighting for LCD televisions and lightweight laptop displays and light source for digital light processing projectors. Since LED’s are small, durable and need little power, they are used in hand held devices such as flashlights, camera flashes and even mobile phone cameras where space is at a premium and bulky voltage raising circuitry is undesirable. LEDs are used for infrared illumination in night vision uses including security cameras.

LEDs are now used commonly in all market areas from commercial to home use: standard lighting, AV, stage, theatrical, architectural, and public installations, and wherever artificial light is used.

Star rating labels are being made mandatory for luminaries/lamps for commercial and outdoor lighting applications. Government backing for green technologies and adoption of high-value applications like street lighting is helping LED lighting.

Energy efficient lighting technologies are very important to India due to problems in energy deficiency, electrification of remote areas and energy sustainability. The prices of LED’s will continue to fall as the high initial investments reduce and competition drives down the pricing. According to Frost & Sullivan, LED markets growth largely depends on standardization, Government support and subsidies, customer awareness and affordability. 


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