April 4, 2024   

$10 Million Award Awaits Final Phase L-Prize Winners

2024 04 l prize doe award 10 million phase three 3s.jpg

Up to four contenders will split prize for demonstrating real-world, groundbreaking lighting solutions


The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has launched the Manufacturing & Installation (M&I) Phase of its three-phase Lighting Prize (L-Prize®) competition, a DOE American-Made Challenge designed to spur groundbreaking innovation, domestic manufacturing, and the benefits of an inclusive, clean-energy economy for next-generation lighting in commercial buildings. Unfolding over 16 months, the M&I Phase will reward production and installation of products that meet L-Prize technical requirements in real-world buildings. Up to four competitors earning the most points based on technical and design innovation, U.S. content, production, and installation will share an award of $10 million.

The final phase of the L-Prize will showcase next-generation lighting solutions that combine high efficacy with exceptional lighting quality, data-driven control, and sustainable design and construction in real buildings. In addition to its technical innovation goals, the L-Prize prioritizes equity, affordability, and resilience-related innovations that will support the broad deployment of winning solutions to all communities, including those with historically limited resources.


The M&I Phase will recognize teams that are able to translate innovations inspired by the L-Prize to market availability and installation. This phase has two separate tracks: the Luminaire Track and the Connected Systems Track. Competitors may submit to the Luminaire Track, the Connected Systems Track, or separately to both tracks. DOE will evaluate each track’s submissions independently. All entries must meet the minimum technical requirements and be fully commercially available and physically installed in real-world applications that demonstrate benefits ranging from energy efficiency and lighting quality to connectivity and sustainability. The M&I Phase also includes evaluation criteria unique to this phase, including U.S. manufacturing content, installation, and deployment strategy.


Phase 3: Manufacturing and Installation
  • Manufacturing and Installation Phase opened: April 3, 2024
  • Manufacturing and Installation Phase expression of interest deadline: October 1, 2024
  • Manufacturing and Installation Phase intent to submit deadline: April 1, 2025
  • Manufacturing and Installation Phase submission deadline: August 5, 2025
  • Manufacturing and Installation Phase winners announced: February 2026 (anticipated)


Winners of previous phases: 

In Phase 1, four innovative concepts were recognized for their breakthroughs in energy efficiency, quality, functionality, and sustainability, highlighting the importance of lighting in addressing the climate crisis and advancing American technology:

  • Project Tango by QuarkStar (Las Vegas, Nevada): A networked, white-tunable luminaire concept with advanced optics and LED technology.
  • Sustainable and Connected Troffer Retrofit by Orion Energy Systems (Jacksonville, Florida): A retrofit solution for fluorescent luminaires, enhancing efficiency and control.
  • Laterally Symmetrical Level 3 Engine for 3D Printing by Smash the Bulb/Bridgelux (Mountain View, California): A 3D-printed semi-indirect luminaire with a high-performance light engine and innovative optical design.
  • Papaya Modular Lighting Ecosystem by Papaya (Evanston, Illinois): A highly modular, community-driven luminaire platform open to ongoing innovation and participation.


Phase 2, or the Prototype Phase, awarded six winners a total of $2 million for their advanced lighting solutions, which emphasize energy efficiency, connectivity, and sustainability, among other criteria. These innovations are expected to redefine commercial lighting by meeting stringent L-Prize requirements and surpassing current market offerings. The winners now advance to the final Manufacturing and Installation Phase of the competition.

Luminaire Track Winners:

  • Signify with "Generation Flex: Light Without Compromise" for $375,000
  • Lightly with "Low-Carbon Biodegradable Luminaire" for $375,000
  • Grid Interactive Efficient Building Alliance (GiEBA) with "Helios HPR-LP160" for $250,000

Connected Systems Track Winners:

  • Signify with "Interact Next-Gen: Light the Way to Building Goals" for $375,000
  • Autani with "Autani Insights 4REAL, with Sensing by Leviton" for $375,000
  • McWong with "Bluetooth® Mesh Wireless Lighting Control System" for $250,000


How to Participate in the L-Prize M&I Phase

Visit the L-Prize website to view the complete competition requirements and timeline.

Register for the informational webinar on May 8, 2:00-3:00 p.m. Eastern.

The L-Prize is an initiative of DOE’s Building Technologies Office within the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, with technical leadership from the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and prize administration provided by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory