What are My Options with Energy Efficient Light Bulbs?

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We all want to do our part when it comes to saving energy, being ‘green’ and contributing to a healthier planet.  But when it comes to light bulbs, how do we know which energy saving options are the best?  Which bulbs last the longest and save the most energy?

Traditional incandescent bulbs use a lot of energy to emit light, thus 90% of the energy used is given off as heat and is wasted.  This is why these traditional light bulbs are being phased out of use.  Energy saving choices for light bulbs today includes halogen incandescent, compact fluorescent bulbs (CFL), and light emitting diodes commonly known as LED lighting.   These newer choices may cost a little more to purchase, but they will save you money during their life cycle.

Compact fluorescent bulbs are more energy efficient than halogen incandescent, and will pay for themselves usually within nine months of use.  CFL bulbs have been shown to use about one fourth of the energy as traditional incandescent bulbs and can last up to ten times longer, providing a quick return on your investment not to mention the time saved in changing bulbs!  LED lighting is quickly becoming a popular choice with advancements in technology.  LEDs are Energy Star™ rated and use about 25% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs, lasting up to 25 times longer.

Experts in Energy Saving Lighting Solutions

The LightSources Group is dedicated to continuous improvement of its processes to help protect the environment. We have locations around the globe, all operating with green practices, and contributing to saving energy with superior products produced with expert research and development.  Our engineers are the best in the industry, providing patented and proprietary solutions for various lighting applications.  In addition we provide training to all employees on our environmentally friendly technologies and business practices.

LightSources and affiliated companies, which include LCD Lighting, Voltarc, LightTech, and Cerlux, make up the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today. We offer standard lamps and components, as well as customized products, with high-quality solutions to meet our partner’s unique needs.  We invite you to contact us today for energy efficient lighting solutions.

What is the Most Energy Efficient Light Bulb?

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At the LightSources group, we recognize that it is important to produce our energy-efficient lamps in the most environmentally-friendly way. To meet that goal, we continue to develop environmentally-friendly technologies as well as implement green business practices. We also provide on-going training for employees regarding the latest environmental issues and proper practices within our industry.

While we strive to lessen our carbon footprint and incorporate sustainable methods into our day-to-day operations, we thought it is important to discuss lighting options for our own homes. Any visit to a do-it-yourself big box store, indicates the selection of energy-efficient light bulbs intended for home use is getting bigger and more complicated.

The U.S. Department of Energy website offers insight into how to light your home with the same amount of light but less expensively. Data shows 5% of the average U.S. household’s energy budget goes to lighting and that one of the easiest way to reduce your energy bills are to use energy-efficient light bulbs.

Although no longer being manufactured, traditional incandescent bulbs used a lot of energy to produce light and 90% of the energy was given off as heat. However when we look at today’s shelves and shelves of bulbs filled with an assortment of halogen incandescent, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light emitting diodes (LEDs), it can be confusing on what to buy.

While halogen incandescent lamps meet the federal regulations, there are now better options available. The Dept. of Energy states compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) are simply curly versions of the long tube fluorescent lights we are all familiar with. Although they are more expensive than traditional incandescent bulbs, CFLs typically pay for themselves in less than nine months. An ENERGY STAR rated CFL “uses about one-fourth the energy and lasts ten times longer than a comparable traditional incandescent bulb that puts out the same amount of light.”

Light emitting diodes (LEDs) represent the fastest developing light technologies. ENERGY STAR LEDs are rated as using only “20%–25% of the energy and last up to 25 times longer than the traditional incandescent bulbs they replace.” They also use less energy and last 8 to 25 times longer than halogen incandescent bulbs.

LightSources and our affiliated companies represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today. Our products are used world-wide in a multitude of applications and industries such as our UV air treatment systems that offer patent-protected, OEM-oriented solutions. Regardless of whether you are a small or large company, or an entrepreneur with a new product idea; trust us with your specialty lighting needs.

Source: energy.gov/energysaver/lighting-choices-save-you-money

Defining Terms Use in Specialty Fluorescent Lights

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There are many terms used to specifically describe the various aspects of fluorescent lighting and the technology behind the engineering and manufacturing of them.  One such term used to help define color in fluorescent light is CIE (Commission Internationale de l’Eclairageis), the international standards organization that sets the standards for color and color measurement.

Fluorescent lamps may be described as cold cathode.  This type of lamp has a cylindrical metal shell (electrode) covered on the inside with an emission coating.  Cold cathode lamps are not heated to induce thermionic emission of electrons such as in hot cathode lamps, but rather, their interior surface produces secondary electrons upon electron and ion impact.  To accelerate ions to a sufficient velocity in order to create free electrons, cold cathode lamps require higher voltages than hot cathode lamps.

Hot cathode lamps usually have a higher power density than cold cathode lamps and emit more electrons from the same surface area, which results in a higher output and the ability to operate at a higher lamp current.  Generally the lamps have a tungsten filament covered with an emissive layer made of material with lower work function that emits electrons better than bare tungsten metal.  The filament is either directly heated, where the filament itself is the source of electrons, or indirectly heated, where the filament is electrically insulated from the cathode.

Another important term in fluorescent lighting is CRI (Color Rendering Index), which quantitatively measures a light source’s ability to render color on a scale of 0 to 100 percent and is independent of color temperature.  If the light has a CRI of 85 to 90 percent, it is considered good at color rendering.  A rating of 90 percent or above, offers the most accurate color discrimination.   If you need more information and clarification on our lamps, please see our website.

LightSources and our affiliated companies represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today.  Our products are used world-wide in a multitude of applications and industries such as our avionic display backlighting that is part of the National Defense and US Space Program.  Please contact us to learn more about our extensive selection of lamps.

 

Build a System for Your Specific Germicidal Application

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For many OEMs, it is often less expensive and more effective to design their system around a customized lamp design rather than trying to build their system around a standard model lamp in order to meet their need for a specific germicidal application.  That is why we offer clients, regardless of whether you are a large OEM, a much smaller operation, or maybe just a start-up, the opportunity to buy exceptional quality standard and nonstandard designs.

Our engineers work diligently with each client to develop a model of lamp that meets your mechanical, electrical and output characteristics.  We will also customize the lamp’s shape and size to meet your requirements.  In fact our scope of experience includes doing just that for our partners in the new equipment market.

The LightSources group also includes a specialty manufacturer of custom ceramic components, Cerlux.  This means we have the resources to offer system-level designs that not only take into account ambient operating conditions, UVC watts and operating life, but also a fully customized ceramic base.  Moreover our clients benefit from the opportunity to design proprietary and patented ceramic bases and sockets for their fully customized lamps.

By creating individual base configurations, you will be able to offer exclusive proprietary products along with the opportunity of increasing your re-lamp sales potential.  We offer a broad choice of colors including all standard pantone colors and premium colors upon request.

In addition this flexibility of design allows businesses to conform their system components to corporate identity guidelines.  All of our quartz lamps are supplied with UV and ozone resistant ceramic bases unless otherwise specified.  Contact us for more information and learn how we can help you get started on designing a germicidal system that specifically meets your needs.

LightSources and its affiliated companies – LCD Lighting, Voltarc, LightTech, and Cerlux represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today.  Our products are used worldwide and are found in a multitude of applications and industries such as our UV germicidal lamps that offer patent-protected, OEM-oriented solutions.

Which is Better for Your Application – Quartz Glass or Soft Glass?

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At LightSources and LightTech, we offer our customers a choice of quality germicidal UVC lamps in either quartz glass or soft glass.  One of the biggest differences between the two is that quartz germicidal glass is made from silica phosphate, which gives it a much harder tensile strength.  Germicidal soft glass is made from a highly refined and pure type of soda lime glass that is similar to visible light fluorescent lamps.

So how do you know which glass is better for your application?  To start with, if your application requires the highest UVC output possible and a long operational life, then you will probably want to go with high-quality quartz glass UVC germicidal lamps.  However as the glass does have a very high Celsius melting point that makes it more difficult to work and requires skilled human operators to manufacture, it is more expensive to produce.  Nonetheless despite the higher cost, the advantages include an approximately 9% higher transmission of UVC than soft glass as well as a higher initial UVC output.

Additionally quartz germicidal UVC lamps can produce 254nm wavelength (killing wave) and 185nm wavelength (Ozone) while still maintaining 85% of their output at 16,000 hours.  The quartz glass is also perfect for high powered lamp designs such as amalgam lamps.

Soft glass has a relatively lower Fahrenheit melting point that makes it much easier to work.  This means that it lends itself to manufacturing automation and can be produced at a lower cost.  The disadvantages of soft glass UVC germicidal lamps is that the transmission of UVC is around 9 percent lower than quartz lamps and has a lower initial UVC output.  Also soft glass does not allow the transmission of UVC wavelengths below 200nm, which means that it cannot be used to produce ozone at 185nm.

LightSources and our affiliated companies represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today.  Our products are used world-wide in a multitude of applications and industries such as our UV germicidal lamps that offer patent-protected, OEM-oriented solutions.  Please contact us to learn more about our large selection of specialty custom and standard lamps.

 

Early Neon Signs

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Signage Lighting of Today

Many of us are old enough to still remember when classic neon signs were a common sight throughout our city’s landscapes.  Although used worldwide, neon signs were very popular in the U.S. starting from the early 1920s to around 1960.  In fact New York City’s Time Square was the site of some of the world’s most famous neon signs of which many were designed by Douglas Leigh, a pioneer in outdoor signage.  As a testament to the widespread use of the signs in the U.S., by 1940 there were almost 2,000 shops producing neon signs.

Neon signs consist of electric lights made from long, luminous gas-discharge tubes filled with rarefied neon or other gases.  Wikipedia explains that, “Neon lights are a type of cold cathode gas-discharge light.”  The sealed glass tube has metal electrodes on each end and is filled with several different types of gases at low pressure.  When electric volts are sent to the electrodes, the gas in the tube ionizes and emits colored light.  In order to produce various colors of light, a mix of different gases and chemicals are used such as: hydrogen (red), helium (yellow), carbon dioxide (white), and mercury (blue).

Probably one of the reasons why neon signage went out of style was due to the nature of its labor intensive, customized production process.  Since the signs are almost an art form to produce, were it not for the fact that the neon signs had such a long lifespan; it would not have been economically feasible even back then to produce the signs.  With the decline of the industry, many cities are now making efforts to preserve and restore the antique signs.

Today, Voltarc Technologies Inc., which is a part of the LightSources group, is one of the most recognized leaders in the signage industry and architectural lighting.  Our highly customized and standard products include fluorescent sign lamps, neon tubing, long lamps, U-lamps, and our unique cup-cathode construction that provides unsurpassed electrical life to the TriLight Max Series of fluorescent lamps.

LightSources and its affiliated companies – LCD Lighting, Voltarc, LightTech, and Cerlux represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today.  Our products are used world-wide in a multitude of applications and industries such as our avionic display backlighting that is part of the National Defense and US Space Program.

Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neon_sign

 

Energy-efficient Low Pressure Curing Lamps

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Several years ago the only UV lamps available to industries to cure free radical UV inks were medium or high pressure UVA (365nm) lamps.  Today however, new advancements have made it possible to use low pressure UVC (254nm) curing lamps to cure “cationic” based UV inks, coatings, lacquers, and resins.  These low pressure UVC (254nm) curing systems provide the benefit of producing no hazardous byproducts as well as offering lower operating costs than either free radical UVA (365nm) curing or heat-based curing systems.

As they operate on significantly less power than medium or high pressure lamps, low pressure lamps are ideal for applications that require dimming at 40%, 60% or 80% of full power.  In addition while both low pressure mercury lamps and amalgam lamps produce UVC (254nm), there is an increasing trend toward using amalgam lamps due to their speed and efficiency in drying cationic based UV inks, coatings and resins.  For example an amalgam lamp can produce an output of 200 to 1000 watts, of which one-third is usable UVC (254nm) energy. Another reason for the growing popularity among industries is that amalgam lamps offer the ability to downsize a system while still maintaining maximum speed and efficiency for UV curing.

Furthermore, the advantages to energy-efficient UV curing are clear when compared to traditional heat curing systems.  UV curing systems are not only easier to maintain, but since they do not produce noxious fumes, do not require expensive exhaust systems. Moreover since the process is instantaneous, it provides economic benefits such as speeding up production times as well as improving consistency and quality of the finished product.

LightSources and LightTech are happy to answer any questions you have regarding an UV system for your application needs.  Contact us for more information on low pressure and amalgam curing lamps.

LightSources and our affiliated companies represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today.  Our team consists of the most highly skilled professionals that specialize in a range of innovative solutions.  Please contact us to learn more about our broad range of standard and custom lighting solutions.

Process Used to Create Ceramic Bases

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Cerlux, a part of the LightSources group, is a specialty manufacturer of custom ceramic components that gives us the ability to offer customers proprietary and patented lamp bases.  While the materials will vary according to your needs as well as the application’s environment, we will help you to determine the best solution for your needs.

The process for choosing the materials is based on Al2O3 content, wear and heat resistance, insulation capacity and color.  The primary characteristics of alumina ceramic include a high melting point, mechanical strength, hardness, wear and heat resistance, heat conduction capacity, and electrical insulation capacity as well as acid and alkali resistance.

At Cerlux, we expertly incorporate the best state-of-the-art manufacturing processes to ensure quality and to keep prices competitive for our ceramic bases and parts.  By using press injection molding, we are able to produce products with complex shapes and thin walls.  For extremely small ceramic parts like electric insulators, wear resistant grinding cylinders, tips and more, we use a hydraulic pressing machine.

Once a product is created, it is fired in kilns under extremely high temperatures.  As a way to reduce our environmental impact, we recycle the heat from our kilns to supply hot water and heat for our entire building.

Glazing is another step in the process and is used to increase the strength of the product as well as to provide a bright, visual surface.  While a mat or shiny glaze is the most common choice of our customers, we also can do any color in the RAL or pantone palette.  A special color can be used as a way to set your product apart or to match corporate colors.  Also decals can be applied to the product after it is glazed and offer a way to have your system components stand out.

LightSources and its affiliated companies – LCD Lighting, Voltarc, LightTech, and Cerlux represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today. Our standard lamps and components as well as customized products offer high-quality solutions to meet our partner’s unique needs.  We invite you to contact us to learn more about our wide selection of lamps.

Get the Best Customized Lighting Solutions

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At the LightSources group, we bring OEMs of any size, entrepreneurs and start-ups both standard and customized lighting solutions that offer unmatched flexibility and manufacturing turnaround as well as cost-effective shipment and delivery options. Together with LightSources’ affiliated companies LCD Lighting and Voltarc, along with our strategic European partners, LightTech and Cerlux, we are the foremost global provider of virtually any type of specialty lighting.

Headquartered in Orange, Connecticut, LightSources is an international front-runner in cutting-edge designs that incorporate a variety of proprietary lighting technologies. LightTech is located in Dunakeszi, Hungary and operates one of the most advanced glassworks in Europe. The large, state-of-the-art facility manufactures T4, T5, T6, T8, T10 and T12 fluorescent and germicidal soft glass.

Our customer base includes some of the largest corporations in the world but we are also just as ready to serve small and medium size OEMs. With our ability to offer short runs and just-in-time completion, we can provide companies with a flexible supply, which helps in reducing a need to stockpile inventory. Furthermore, we partner with many of our customers to assist them in developing proprietary products and private brands to distinguish themselves in their respective markets.

We encourage you to contact us to discover how we can take your idea from prototype right through to a finished product. You will find each company within the LightSources group operates with the most state-of-the-art, modern specialty lamp production equipment as well as utilize manufacturing technologies unlike any other in the industry. One example of our innovation is that we use an automated exhaust processing system for our quartz germicidal production which allows us to make lamps at a substantially faster pace and with a higher consistent quality. See our website for more information.

LightSources along with our affiliated companies, represent the leading high-tech designers and manufacturers in the lamp industry today. Our products are used world-wide in a multitude of applications and industries such as our UV germicidal lamps that offer patent-protected, OEM-oriented solutions. Please contact us to learn more about our extensive selection of lamps.