Over the years, advances in technology have brought many innovations to the lighting industry.
In 1874 Thomas Edison perfected the first light bulb that could last up to 1,200 hours. Flash forward to the late 1900's and we were utilizing incandescent and fluorescent lights, which can last thousands of hours. However, the lighting industry is constantly changing and LEDs quickly became the front runner.
Significant improvements have been made to artificial light since the early 19th century. The improvement of efficiency, reliability and cost is ever present. For the longest time, the industry standard was incandescent, now we have fluorescent and lighting emitting diodes, or LED for short., providing flexible options with a large number of applications. The technology of LED lighting has grown rapidly over the past few decades. LED lighting has become a mainstay in the lighting, medical, architectural, agricultural, aerospace and many other industries.
What are the advantages of LEDs?
Easily the most significant advantage of LEDs compared to traditional lighting solutions, is the long lifespan. Unlike incandescent lighting, LEDs don't "burn out" or fail, they simply dim over time. The average LED lasts 50,000 operating hours to 100,000 operating hours or more. An LED lifecycle on average is 2-4 times as long as most fluorescent, metal halide and sodium vapor lights and is more than 40 times as long as the average incandescent bulb. This means less frequent replacement and as a result, lower cost. Traditional lighting uses fragile elements and are susceptible to breakage. The bulb is usually contained in a glass or quartz exterior which can easily be damaged. LED lights are a solid state lighting device and are much less likely to shatter if they are dropped or receive an external impact. Without filaments or glass enclosures LEDs are breakage resistant and largely immune to vibrations and other impacts. Their durability makes them ideal for exposure to rougher conditions.
LEDs generally consume very low amounts of power. LEDs can use up to 90% less energy than a comparable halogen or fluorescent light bulb. Ultimately, using far less watts and having lower energy bills while getting the same results. Light Emitting Diodes, or LEDs produce light when voltage is applied to negatively charged semiconductors, causing electrons to combine and create a unit of light, or a photon.
In a world that is constantly trying to improve the environment, it is refreshing to know that LEDs are better for the environment for two big reasons. First, they conserve energy. LED is a highly energy efficient lighting technology and has the potential to fundamentally change the future of lighting in the United States. On average, LED's use 75% less energy and can last 40 times longer than incandescent lighting. Second, LED bulbs themselves can be recycled. LED's do not have the environmental issues common to traditional lighting solutions like fluorescent or mercury vapor lights which both contain mercury. LED light bulbs contain no dangerous chemicals which allow them to be recycled.
Safety is a very important advantage when it comes to LED lighting. The number one hazard when it comes to lighting is the emission of heat. LEDs emit almost no forward heat while traditional bulbs like an incandescent can convert more than 90% of the total energy used to power them directly into heat. That means only 10% of the energy powering incandescent lights is actually used for light. Also, because LEDs consume less power they can operate effectively on low-voltage electrical systems. Which makes it generally much safer in the event that something goes wrong. LED bulbs unlike other energy- efficient types of lighting, do not emit polluting radiation and therefore do not pose a health hazard. LED's do not have the environmental issues common to traditional lighting solutions. They contain no dangerous chemicals which allow them to be safely and easily recycled.
Energy Consumption and Cost
On average, electrical consumption cost is 17% of a company's budget. If a business is looking primarily at initial cost, LEDs probably won't be the first choice. LEDs are initially more expensive than fluorescent bulbs, however their lifespan make up for it in the long run. As an added benefit, LED light bulbs are about 5 times more efficient than fluorescent lighting. LED lighting can cut costs down drastically and generally consume very low amounts of power. LEDs can use up to 90% less energy than a comparable halogen or fluorescent light bulb. Ultimately, using far less watts and having lower energy bills while getting the same results. LED bulbs are also more durable than fluorescent bulbs due to their compact size. Replacement becomes minimal compared to the constant replacement with fluorescent bulbs.
LEDs are an incredibly useful technology that is fast becoming the first choice in many industries. If you are looking for more information or are working on a reflector design to get the most out of an LED., we can help. Contact Reflective Concepts today to learn how to get the best reflector for your LED.