2General Illumination -Terms and Definitions General Illumination - a term used to distinguish between lighting that illuminates tasks, spaces, or objects from lighting used in indicator or purely decorative applications. In most cases, general illumination is provided by white light sources, including incandescent, fluorescent, high-intensity discharge sources, and white LED’s.Ballast - an electrical device used with fluorescent or HID lamps to supply sufficient voltage to start and operate the lamp but then to limit the current during operation.Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL) - a generic name used for a whole family of small, single-ended fluorescent lamps with a folded, bridged, or spiral glass tube design and with high color rendering (CRI > 80) and a long life (> 8,000 hours).Color Rendering Index (CRI) - a measure of a lamp’s ability to render colors accurately. The scale ranges from 1 (low pressure sodium) to 100 (the sun). A CRI of 85 is considered to be very good.Correlated Color Temperature (CCT) - relative color appearance of a white light source, indicating whether it appears more yellow/gold or more blue, in terms of the range of available shades of white. This is measured on a Kelvin scale. 5000K is considered midday sunlight.Kelvin Scale
3Cove Lighting - a lighting system comprised of light sources shielded by a ledge or recess, and distributing light over the ceiling and possibly the upper part of the wall.Direct Current (DC) - electric current without alterations. DC current is usually supplied by a battery, a transformer, or photovoltaic cells.Efficacy - a measure used to compare light output to energy consumption. Efficacy is measured in lumens per watt. A 100-watt light source producing 1750 lumens of light has an efficacy (efficiency) of 17.5 lumens per watt (L/W).Fluorescent Lamp - a low-pressure mercury electric-discharge lamp (light bulb) in which a phosphor coating on the inside of the glass tubing transforms some of the ultraviolet energy created inside the lamp into visible light.Halogen Lamp - a type of incandescent lamp (light bulb) that contains halogen gases (such as iodine, chlorine, bromine, and fluorine), which slow the evaporation of the tungsten filament.HID Lamp - high intensity discharge (HID) lamps (light bulbs) have a longer life and provide more light (lumens) per watt than most other light sources. Available in mercury vapor, metal halide, high pressure sodium, and low pressure sodium types.Cove LightingHalogen Metal Halide
4Watts x Hours x Local Cost = Energy Cost Hard Wired - technically means that the light fixture is permanently connected to an electrical source. The light fixture is not hard-wired if it gets power via a cord & plug.Incandescent Lamp - lamp (light bulb) in which light is produced by means of an element heated to the point of incandescence by the passage of an electric current.Luminaire - a complete lighting unit consisting of a lamp (light bulb) or lamps, a housing, and a connection to the source of electrical power.Line Voltage - usually 120 volts. This is the power coming into a building or outlet.Low Voltage - usually 12 volts but sometimes 24 volts.Lumen - a unit of measure used to describe the amount of light that a light source produces or emits.Wattage - the amount of electrical power consumed by a lamp or light fixture measured in “watts”Watts = Volts x AmpsWatts x Hours x Local Cost = Energy Cost1000
5LED 101- Terms and Definitions Light Emitting Diode - a semi-conductor diode (chip) that emits light when an electrical current is applied in the forward direction of the device, as in the simple LED circuit.Binning – In general, LED’s are mass produced in a “bin”. These bin’s are made with the same semiconductor material, thus they produce the same shade of color. A different bin of LED’s has the chance for variance in semiconductor material, thus possibly producing a different shade of the same color.Solid State Lighting (SSL) – This is LED technology in general. The term refers to the solid nature of the LED. There are no gasses, filaments, or chemicals producing the light. This also gives it resistance to shock and impact that older technologies cannot provide.RGB- The combination of Red, Green, and Blue Led’s to produce 16.7 million colors. This gives the ability to do color changes, washes, and even video capability.High Brightness LED – LED’s that individually consume 1 watt or more. These are used in spotlight, floodlight, and general illumination applications.Printed Circuitry Board (PCB Board) – In LED applications, A PCB is a thin board made of fiberglass or a similar material. Electrical wires are "printed" onto the board, connecting the LED’s together. This allows for superior controllability.Packaged 5mm LED’sRGBHigh Brightness LED – 1watt
6Viewing Angle – LED is a very directional light source and some diodes can be made with a narrow or wide viewing angle.SMD – This means Surface Mount Device. Basically, the LED’s are mounted on a continuous strip or bar (PCB Board) without penetrating the backing (ie, the underside is smooth).Through-Hole-Technology – The diode penetrates the back of the PCB board so that only the diode is visible from the front. All circuitry and soldering is on the back of the strip or bar.Through-Hole SMD
7LED - Advantages and Challenges LED’s produce more light per watt than incandescent bulbs, and are rapidly approaching CFL’s.LED light is directional and can be focused to highlight areas without the use of reflectors.LED lifetime is not effected by on/off cycling. Fluorescents burn out more quickly. HID’s require warm up and cool down periods.LED’s produce instant light when turned on. They achieve full brightness is micro seconds.LED’s, being solid state components, are difficult to damage with external shock, unlike fluorescent and incandescent bulbs which are fragile.LED’s are a true GREEN lighting source as they do not contain any harmful chemicals or gasses. Fluorescents contain mercury, and Incandescent contains lead.Average lifetimes frequently average 50,000 hours, and even up to 100,000 hours in certain applications. Fluorescents - 15,000 to 20,000 hrs., Incandescent – 1,500 to 2,500 hrs.LED’s rarely fail to the point of replacement. Fluorescent and Incandescent can burn out completely where LED failure is usually classified as light depreciation (fading over time).LED’s ARE the most efficient light source. In a tough economy right now, LED’s are a great way to lower monthly energy bills, and save the planet at the same time.LED’s do not emit any IR or UV. This is especially important in perishable food displays.IncandescentFluorescent CFL=
8CHALLENGESCost has been the biggest obstacle for LED to overcome. We are approaching the price point where LED makes sense in EVERY application, but we are not quite there yet. For new construction or large remodels, LED makes perfect sense as the payback will be much faster.Optics are needed with LED’s to disperse light. Optics can lower actual light output. The technology is combating this with higher brightness LED’s.Thermal Management is usually the largest technical problem to overcome. Heat can lower LED lifetime which is why we say that the lifetime depends on the application. Insulated areas where heat cannot escape can be detrimental to LED life. Some technologies, however, are built with mechanisms (heat sinks) to fight this.Availability of LED products on hand is usually limited. Some Lighting Suppliers are starting to carry a limited selection, but the full range of possibilities is yet to be introduced.
9What does this all mean?LED is still a relatively new technology in comparison to incandescent and fluorescent. This means that our general knowledge in lighting is invaluable in explaining the benefits of LED.These terms and concepts are to give you a basic background. They are not the end-all of knowledge. The true intention of this is to spark your own research and make it more familiar.We need to be able to “talk shop” with our potential distributors. This background will give you some credibility when talking to experienced re-sellers.Innovative LED Lighting DesignThis will help you when reading spec sheets or competitor brochures. These technical specs, and your understanding of them ,can be the difference in closing a sale.Eventually, we will all become lighting designers in some form or another. Knowing the general electricity requirements, the effect that a light will have, and how to apply it will be key.Traditional Landscape Uplighting
10LED NEON FLEX - Breakdown What is it?LED Neon Flex was developed over 20 years ago, and several manufacturers in China claim to have the rights to it. It is used for an alternative to exposed neon bordering, and is truly the simplest, yet most advanced solution for long, power consuming runs. It can bend and flow with rooflines and edges without fear of breakage. Planning and Installation times for users are drastically reduced with its pure simplicity.Different forms of LED Neon Flex have circulated around the U.S. market for 7-8 years. Most of these products have been cheap and poorly constructed imitators. This is why many early applications failed, and thus, left a bad taste in the mouth of those first willing to try it.As a result of a great partnership with our manufacturer, Brilliant Concepts has unveiled the LED Neon Flex-Plus. The first and only Patented, UL Listed, Guaranteed, and Inventoried product of this type in the North American Market. Problems of the past have been addressed by our manufacturer, and we feel confident that we are providing the best product on the market.
11Uses and ApplicationsExposed Neon – We must be careful in our language when explaining our product as a neon replacement. We must be clear that it as an “exposed neon” replacement or alternative. Neon is also used to do face lit and halo lit channel letters.This seems to be an industry wide term, so we should go with the flow.Architectural Bordering – This is the intended application for LED Neon-Flex, and although it works well in other applications, this is where it truly shines. It can accent sharp edges, or flow and bend with a tight curve or a long radius. Just about every retail or service related business can benefit even from the simple roof outline. This is proven to draw attention and curiosity. It may be one of the simplest, yet most effective forms of advertising.LED NEON FLEX BORDERINGExposed Glass Neon Sign & Bordering
12Interior Design – This is a great avenue as LED Neon-Flex can go places previously forbidden by Glass Neon. It is a basic industry standard to NOT mount exposed Glass Neon below the 8 ft. line due to its fragility and shock hazard. LED Neon Flex can be mounted on stairs, under bar countertops, and embedded in floors. This is due to the durable nature of LED technology and the added protection of the PVC jacket.Signage – LED Neon-Flex can be used in some signage applications. The effect is debated among sign industry insiders. Some have said that LED Neon-Flex works well for Face-Lit Channel Letters, Halo-Lit Channel Letters, and Sign Bordering. Others say that it is only bright enough for bordering. There is also a 24v version that is a smaller diameter and perfect for making custom signs.Bar – Floor Outline and Bar CountertopHalo-Lit Channel LetterNeon-Flex Ultra Thin 24v- Custom SignageFace-Lit Channel Letter
13Innovators vs. Imitators There are many factors involved in making such a simple product. LED Neon-Flex has been made by several different manufacturers, all with different philosophies, materials, and construction techniques. They all seem to produce a similar effect when first plugged in. The product earns its wings in time-tested applications and installations.The imitators use cheaper components and materials, short-cut construction techniques, and unskilled and untrained workers to assemble it. The result is a low quality product that does LED Technology a disservice. These specific companies usually lend to a product that is just not bright enough, leaves many hot spots, and has continual section burnouts.Brilliant Concepts’ manufacturer, however, is a true innovator in this field. Large amounts of time, energy, and money have gone into product research and development to provide us with a truly explosive and reliable product. This makes Brilliant Concepts the only North American company to offer the LED Neon Flex-Plus through a large domestic inventory.