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Thermal Management

Temperature and its control have a significant impact on the quality and lifespan of an LED. To ensure LEDs operate at their optimum capabilities, effective thermal management is essential.

The principal role of thermal management is to extract the heat from the LED module and dissipate it into the surrounding air. This can be done through conduction, convection and radiation and different approaches are being taken to this issue across the industry, with varying degrees of success.

Optimum thermal management is achieved when the number of thermal conductive interfaces between the LED and its heat sink are reduced and the thermal resistance between these interfaces is minimised. In addition, careful consideration needs to be given to the heat sink material, its surface area, geometry and roughness as well as the management of airlow around the LED as a whole.

Colour Consistency

The key to creating an LED lighting scheme, that looks good for years to come is in ensuring that, over their lifespan, all of the lamps are performing within an acceptable tolerance in terms of colour deviation. To define ‘acceptable tolerance’ from lamp to lamp, LED manufacturers have adopted the MacAdam ellipse and SDCM (Standard Deviation of Colour Matching) measurement of colour consistency. MacAdam EllipseM

The MacAdam ellipse is a system of colour measurement. It measures how much colour variation is possible around these axes, before the human eye detects a colour change. A series of ellipses can then be drawn around any target colour, and the closer any given lamp is to the target, the less colour deviation will be experienced when these lamps are placed side by side in an installation.

The distance from the target point in each ellipse is measured in SDCM. An SDCM of 1 step means that there is no colour difference between LED chips, 2-3 SDCM means that there is hardly any visible colour difference. Colour consistency of 7 SDCM is accepted by the market and in line with Energy Star requirements.

Colour Rendering

The Color Rendering Index (CRI or Ra) is a quantitative measure, which rates a light source’s ability to reproduce the colours of objects faithfully. In order to objectively compare the colour rendering properties of any light source, the CIE’s standardised measuring method operates on a scale from 0 to 100 (poor to excellent). The colour change of 14 standard colours is calculated when an object is exposed to a specific light source and then this is compared to a reference illuminant of the same colour temperature (a black body* is used for colour temperatures up to 5000K and daylight above that). The CRI for a pair of light sources can only be compared if they have the same colour temperature.

Life & Lumen Maintenance

LED lamps are different to Incandescent, Halogen and Fluorescent lamps. These older technologies base their life declarations on average rated life at 50% survival (this is a legal European requirement under IEC 60064). This has been the standard approach for some time and does not take into account the amount of light those lamps emit, only the number that survive to a certain point.

However, the semi-conductor industry has always rated LEDs differently, and since the recent boom in LEDs for mainstream lighting there has been some confusion over these differences. Megaman is now seeking to clarify its position for its ranges and categories of lamps.

Currently Megaman offers an Economy LED Series and Professional LED Series in the UK. The rated life as shown on our product packaging may say 25,000 hours for the 6W GU10 reflector for example. This would be the L90 value, the L70 value being 50,000 hours.

The “L” values represent the rated life at the point in which the lumen output falls to the declared level. For instance, a figure of L70 50,000 hours means the average point in hours at which the lamps will have a 30% reduction in light (i.e. 70%) output is 50,000 hours. L90 25,000 hours means that at 25,000 hours light output would be expected to fall by 10%.

Note that this does not relate to any failures. Forsurvivalanother term “F” is used. Again for clarity50,000 hours L70 F50means at 50,000 hours there will be a 30% drop in lumens and 50% of the lamps will have survived. Clearly it is therefore possible to have lamps where several different life levels (L) are quoted and they may all be correct. For instance, it is possible to have an L50, L10 and L35 (and any other level) rated life.

It is also important to realise that the rated life (as shown on the lamp packaging) is just a guide and the levels are average figures determined at an ambient temperature of 25oC in open fixtures. When lamps are operated in enclosed fixture (for example fire rated fittings in the UK) these levels may change in accordance with temperature and the operating parameters and you should seek further advice. For clarity please call us for the appropriate “L” value for the lamp in question.

R9 Technology

Thanks to MEGAMAN’s innovative design and patented technology, the R9 series offer retailers a high quality lighting intensity and superb performance. Easier to control than their high CRI high-pressure sodium equivalents, The MEGAMANLED R9 Series of lamps are the best alternative to traditional halogen in this type of application.

The LED R9 Series outperforms metal halide products, which are traditionally weak in red rendition. Furthermore they are quick and simple to turn on and off, providing instantaneous, colour-perfect luminance, not having the long warm-up or restart time associated with existing metal halide and high pressure sodium technology.

MEGAMANR9 LED light sources not only have a high red colour rendition value of R9 of ≥ 76, but also have high values for regular CRI (CRI=94) and the other “saturated” colours R10 to R14. This means that the MEGAMAN LED R9 Series creates well-balanced and high quality light, making it the perfect light source for food and other display lighting applications, where a sense of the freshness and richness of the product’s red colours are needed.