GE Energy’s new Smart compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulb combines miniaturized electronics with GE’s Spiral CFL inside the glass bulb to achieve a conventional-sized bulb with added energy saving capabilities. The profile of the CFL bulb is virtually identical to a standard incandescent light bulb but offers the equivalent power of a 60W bulb with just 15W.

The 15-watt incandescent-shaped CFL is designed for people who want the look of a traditional light bulb with the energy savings of long-life performance bulbs. The bulb offers 8,000-hours guaranteed for five years based on four hours of daily use.

This latest release expands GE’s family of energy-saving, long-life CFL bulbs, which includes daylight and dimmable Spiral CFLs, 3-way CFLs, and decorative covered CFLs.

The new Smart CFL bulb will be available from limited outlets in December and January, with more stockists available from April to coincide with Earth Day. GE is planning to introduce 9-watt and 20-watt offerings in the same shape between April and June 2009, which will offer 40-watt and 75-watt equivalents, respectively. The 20-watt CFL will have a slightly taller profile that mirrors a standard incandescent 3-way bulb. A 100-watt equivalent could be introduced as early as 2010.

Emily Clark