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How does LED compare with neon and fluro?

How does LED compare with neon and fluro?

              

Comparing Neon, Fluorescent & LED lighting


Neon, Fluorescent & LED Light sources are the main three lighting sources for all signage products. Although each present much the same final desired affect, there are some distinct differences that the average sign specifier / buyer, may not be aware of.


LED lighting with its lower power consumption, longer lifespan and low heat output, has been widely accepted as the new type of environment friendly lamp for illumination and decoration.


Using LED lighting can save you up to 90% energy compared with traditional fluro / cold cathode lighting sources. It does not contain detrimental materials like mercury or phosphor, and can be recycled ‘cleanly’.


LED lamps have already been widely used in city lighting, engineering, advertisement signs, building outlines, stage, background lighting, garden and so on.


LED products available


•    LED ‘RGB’ modules creating varying colour outputs,

•    LED Bulb replacements for incandescent bulbs,
•    LED Spot lamp – high intensity,  
•    LED Display lighting for POP displays etc.
•    LED High power flood lamps for light ‘wall washing’ applications.

With the recent breakthroughs in LED technology and manufacturing techniques, LED lighting is now considered to have many advantages over neon and fluro lighting.


LED benefits over Neon & Fluro lighting


•    Greater reliability of performance

•    Longevity of the unit 50 -100,000 hours  
•    Huge savings on costly ongoing maintenance
•    Dramatically reduced running costs, based on KW consumed
•    Reduced Installation costs saving electrical trades costs.
•    Lower cost of associated equipment
•    Fully programmable both cable and wireless

Other benefits of LED over fluro and neon lighting include………


•    Another factor to consider is the insignificant amount of heat generated with LEDs compared to heat generated by fluro ballast. The costs of added power consumption to help ‘cool’ a building being heated by fluro ballast, cannot be ignored.

•    Size, shape and configuration of the backlit area can restrict the use of fluros due to their size whereas LED modules can fit in almost anywhere.
•    In areas that are prone to moisture from water, washing, cleaning, humidity etc, 12volt LED is a much safer alternative to 240volt fluro lighting and certainly better than up to 15,000volt neon!
•    The options of different solid colours and RGB colour change via fading / animation is another benefit of LED over fluro & neon.
•    LED lighting can be easily controlled via wireless modem & remote control.


Ignition for lighting output

Although the tube itself emits little heat, significant heat is generated though through the ballast. This heat contributes to the cooling costs especially in office areas with large expanses of fluorescent lighting is used.Fluorescent light bulbs and tubes need a ballast to ‘ignite’ the gas they use to create light. Regular light bulbs (also known as incandescent bulbs) create light by heating a filament inside the bulb. The heat makes the filament white-hot, producing the light that you see. In a fluorescent bulb, when the gas is excited by electricity, it emits invisible ultraviolet light that hits the white coating (phosphor) inside the fluorescent bulb. The coating changes the ultraviolet light into light you can see. A lot of the energy used to create the heat that lights an incandescent bulb is wasted. Because fluorescent bulbs don't use heat to create light, they are far more energy-efficient than regular incandescent bulbs.

LED lighting modules on the other hand, require no ballast. Depending on the particular make of the LED module, it can be powered by a range of voltages. The most common are 12V, 24V and 240V.

The combination of gas, electricity, and coating in a fluorescent bulb is so effective at producing light that, without something to regulate the electricity flowing into the bulb, the light will continue to gain intensity until the bulb stops working. That's where a ballast comes in — it supplies the initial electricity that creates the light, and then it regulates the amount of electricity flowing through the bulb so that the right amount of light is emitted.

“Efficiency” comparison between Fluro, Incandescent & LED

LED lighting is by far more efficient than both fluorescent and incandescent. LED light output is more intense by area, has no heat emitting element and requires no high charge for gas ignition.


Fluorescent light bulbs (including compact fluorescents) are more energy-efficient than regular bulbs because of the different method they use to produce light. Regular bulbs (also known as incandescent bulbs) create light by heating a filament inside the bulb; the heat makes the filament white-hot, producing the light that you see. A lot of the energy used to create the heat that lights an incandescent bulb is wasted. A fluorescent bulb, on the other hand, contains a gas that, when excited by electricity, hits a coating inside the fluorescent bulb and emits light. Because fluorescent bulbs don't use heat to create light, they are far more energy-efficient than regular incandescent bulbs.

 “Disposal issues” comparison between Fluro, Incandescent & LED

LED modules require no special treatment for disposal. LED modules contain no harmful chemicals or reactants that might cause environmental issues.

Fluorescent and compact fluorescent light bulbs used at home can be disposed of in the same way as regular light bulbs. While all fluorescent bulbs contain a trace amount of mercury and phosphor, the quantity is so minute that disposal is not currently regulated but governments and environmental groups have these lighting products in their sights for future disposal regulations.

“Heat Output” comparison between Fluro, Incandescent & LED

LED lighting modules emit negligible amounts of heat, certainly not to the extent that the output of heat requires controlling and / or removal as is needed of fluorescent and incandescent lighting.


Regular light bulbs, known as incandescent bulbs, create light by heating a filament inside the bulb; the heat makes the filament white-hot, producing the light that you see. Halogen light bulbs create light through the same method. Because incandescent and halogen bulbs create light through heat, about 90% of the energy they emit is in the form of heat (also called infrared radiation). To reduce the heat emitted by regular incandescent and halogen light bulbs, use a lower watt bulb (like 60 watts instead of 100).

Fluorescent light bulbs use an entirely different method to create light. Both compact fluorescent bulbs and fluorescent tubes contain a gas that, when excited by electricity, hits a coating inside the fluorescent bulb and emits light. (This makes them far more energy-efficient than regular incandescent bulbs.) The fluorescent bulbs used in your home emit only around 30% of their energy in heat, making them far cooler than regular bulbs and an ideal choice whenever reducing heat from bulbs is important.

 “Phosphor & Mercury” content comparison between Fluro, Incandescent & LED

LED and incandescent lights have no phosphor or mercury content. The much promoted energy saving lamps ALL contain phosphor or mercury

The white powder that you see inside a fluorescent lamp is called phosphor, which is a substance that emits white, visible light whenever it absorbs light waves. Both compact fluorescent bulbs and fluorescent tubes contain a gas that gives off invisible light when excited by electricity. This invisible light travels to the phosphor coating on the bulb, where it is transformed into light visible to the human eye.

“Affects of water & high humidity” comparison between Fluro, Incandescent & LED

LED ‘waterproof’ modules are suitable for use in areas of high humidity and in installations where they are prone to getting wet. Depending on the module and the wiring, some applications allow for LED modules to be totally submersed. LED module housings are usually made from plastic or aluminium. With waterproof modules usually encased in a clear resin, there is no possibility for corrosion to take place nor is there any electrical danger of shortage. 12v LED is used extensively for garden lighting and in signage applications where there is a possibility of modules being exposed to water and high humidity.

Low voltage LED installations make then totally safe in any environment.

Fluorescent and incandescent lighting cannot be used in wet areas or areas of high humidity without substantial added protection which adds considerably to the initial installation costs. Components are prone to corrosion and there is the great danger of electrocution should water come into contact with the 240volt supply.

 

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