A newly patented process for completing the spectral light array emitted by LED bulbs provides a low-cost method for producing better human centered lighting (HCL). This process uses non-luminescent colorant filters, filling out the jagged LED spectral emission into a full, white light array. While LED bulbs have the distinct economic advantages of using less energy, producing less heat and lasting years longer than traditional incandescent bulbs, the persistent metameric failure of LED bulbs has resulted in slower, and sometimes reluctant, adoption of LED lighting by the residential, retail and architectural markets. Adding missing wavelengths to LED generated bulbs via colorant filters increases the aesthetic appeal of the light by decreasing current levels of metameric failure, reducing the ‘flatness’, ‘harshness’, and ‘dullness’ of LED generated light reported by consumers. LED phosphor-converted light can be successfully tuned to "whiter" white light with selective color filtering using permanent, durable transparent pigments. These transparent pigments are selectively applied in combination with existing manufacturing technologies and utilized as a final color-tuning step in bulb design. The quantity of emitted light chosen for color filtering can be adjusted from 1% to 100% of emitted light, creating a custom balance of light quantity with light quality. This invention recognizes that “better light” is frequently chosen over “more light” in the consumer marketplace.
Illuminant metameric failure is frequently experienced when viewing material samples under LED generated light vs. traditional incandescent light. LED light temperatures can be improved with phosphor coatings, but long-wave red light is still generally absent in LED "warm-white" light, resulting in metameric failure of orange-to-red objects. Drawing on techniques developed for the architectural restoration of stained glass, we find that transparent, heat-resistant, permanent, pigmented coatings can be applied to any glass, aluminum or plastic surface of an LED bulb, including the phosphor plate, dome or envelope, to produce warmer visible light than in current warm-light LED bulbs. These glazes can be applied in combination with existing technologies to better tune the LED emitted light or they may be used alone. These pigmented coatings include, but are not limited to, those made by suspending inorganic materials in potassium silicates or durable transparent pigmented resins. The pigmented resin glazes may be produced in either a clear gloss vehicle or an iridescent, light diffusing transparent base. Further, a graduated density of the tinted glazes on dimmable bulbs allow the light to change color as wattage is diminished. The glazes may be applied in the manufacturing of the bulb or marketed to current bulb owners as an after-market product to better tune the thousands of LED light bulbs currently in use.