APC Cold Cathode
- General Details
The long lasting and energy efficient architectural lighting
Suitable for outdoor and indoor use,
cold cathode has many advantages over other forms of lighting
Using a cold cathode system releases the architect or lighting designer
from having to conform to standardized, often inflexible stock systems
from a lighting manufacturer’s catalogue.
Cold cathode is unrivaled in its design flexibility:
. wide range of colors,
. high energy efficiency,
. low maintenance requirements,
. the lamp life is not affected by on/off cycles.
. operative life in the average range of 50,000 hours to 100.000 hours
. diameters from 20mm to 25mm,
. length from a few centimeters to 2.4 meters;
. highly resistant to vibration and mechanical stress;
. easily dimmable without generating radio interference;
. Color Rendering Index up to 99;
. operating temperatures from -40 ° C to +70 ° C.;
. availability of color temperature from 2.400K to 9.500K,
. with the option to create a kind of dynamic light.
- Techical Info
LED vs. Cold Cathode
Beware of the 100,000 hour LED myth
Every time you see anything regarding LEDs, it is always stated that they have a 100,000 hour life expectancy. This implies that you can just install them and forget about them for more than 11 years of continuous use. This claim is so common that most people have come to accept it as hard fact.
The reality is quite different… A 5mm epoxy UV LED working at full current and an elevated temperature, may have its output decreased to 50% in less than 1,000 hours… In architectural lighting-applications, where maintenance and energy costs are important, a superior choice is still Cold Cathode lamps.
Let’s compare typical white LEDs with 25m diameter warm white Cold Cathode lamps for general illumination applications. The table below shows the typical performance ranges for both.
LEDs are here to stay for specialty lighting applications, but are not necessarily the best answer to most lighting needs. When looking at a data sheet or specifications for LEDs, what is left out can be more important than what is put in. Do your homework carefully.
Cold Cathode lamps are a mature, proven technology with many benefits. When all key issues are taken into account, it is clear that Cold Cathode lamps still have much to offer over LEDs.
Source: Dan Watts
Mr Watts is an independent technical consultant and circuit design engineer. He has over 50 years of electrical engineering experience. Much of his design work has focused on power supplies and ballast design for the lighting industry. He served as Director of Engineering for three years at Micro Lamps Inc., a supplier of premium LEDs and other light sources. He has presented numerous papers at national lighting conferences.
Cold Cathode Typical White LED Lumens per Watt 105 to 124 lumens/watt 12 to 22 lumens/watt Lumen Maintenance < 0.2% loss per 1,000 hours > 6% loss per 1,000 hours Typical Lamp Life 50,000 to 100,000 or more hours < 10,000 hours to 1/2 of original brightness Color Uniformity Consistent over tube length Must be bin matched Cost per Lumen $ 0.02 to $ 0.03 per lumen $ 0.20 to $ 1.00 per lumen
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