In Design Boom’s RE-think RE-cycle competition, Mahendra Chauhan and Sanjay Rajput from India propose a novel, extremely TreeHugger way to double the life of the common lightbulb.
Their concept: a typical lightbulb is 35 grams, 0.5 grams of which is the tungsten filament. The tungsten fails, the bulb is pitched, 35 grams of materials out the window. Add an extra filament and 2 extra contacts and when the first filament fails, you can rotate the bulb 90 degrees and get a whole other lifetime from the same bulb.
Old way: 35 grams. x number of hours. Effort to buy, change bulb.
New way: 35.5 grams. 2x number of hours. Less effort to ‘change’ bulb.
This reminds me of the European scrolling advertisements… everybody seems to win: the scrolling ad is cheaper because 2 other parties are paying for the same space and the vendor makes more money because the sum total is more than a stationary ad. I would pay a little more to have the convenience of re-using a bulb rather than replacing it and the added cost to the manufacturer has to be negligible.
PS: I believe LED light bulbs such as these will replace our old fashioned filament bulbs sometime soon. These LED bulbs are still pretty expensive at $80 each, but their average life is 50,000 hours! I think I will replace ceiling bulbs that burn out and are hard to reach with these LED bulbs – because if they burn for an average of say 3 hours/night (conservative estimate because I do travel a lot) – they will last around 45 years!!!