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Luminaires are complete lighting units that produce, control, and distribute light.

In addition to a light source, they consist of integral components that may include optical control devices; equipment to position, protect, and connect the light source; and components to start, operate, dim, or otherwise control and maintain their operation. Luminaires also may be equipped to receive signals from automatic or manual controls.

Luminaires provide general or localized illumination in industrial, commercial, public, institutional, and residential applications, including indoor, outdoor, specialty, and hazardous/adverse locations.

Through NEMA, Members advise the U.S. Department of Energy and Federal Energy Management Program on energy-efficient product recommendations for federal purchasing. ​



  • Develops industry documents and review external activities related to recessed luminaire and micro-ballast compatibility Standards as well as metal halide lamp and luminaire best practices
  • Contributes to revisions of the National Electrical Code® (NEC)
  • Collaborates with the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) on technical positions for roadway and outdoor lighting
  • Advises and works with federal and state authorities on outdoor lighting codes, night light pollution, and light trespass regulations
  • Works with the Environmental Protection Agency on ENERGY STAR® Buildings program and Luminaire ENERGY STAR product programs
  • Promotes the National Voluntary Luminaire Efficacy Rating (LER) and Information Program under the 1992 Energy Policy Act for fluorescent, commercial downlight, and industrial HID luminaires​


  • Affects Standards development within the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), especially within Technical Committee 34 and its LUMEX panel, which develops international Standards for lamps and related equipment
  • Shapes regional luminaire Standards to ensure harmonization in Canada, Mexico, and the U.S.
  • Develops Binational and North American Luminaire Safety and Performance Standards with Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and CSA ​


  • Commercial and residential consumers
  • Jurisdictions that manage roadways (e.g., streets, bridges, tunnels, and highways)
  • Lighting designers
  • Luminaire manufacturers
  • Retrofit and new building construction
  • Specifiers

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