Author Archives: Toni Kulikoff

About Toni Kulikoff

Toni is the person responsible for Arrant-Light's marketing and communication. With a little knowledge of the technology itself, Toni's posts are mainly written without a technological angle.

Why Heat Pipe is Better than Traditional Heat Sink?

You will need a heat sink when you use a COB LED in your luminaire. The traditional way of transferring the heat away from the light source is to use a passive aluminum heat sink. In this blog post, I’ll introduce you the new way of cooling: heat pipe.

Traditional heat sinks are based on the fact that aluminum transfers heat away from the light source. The higher the power of the LED is, the more you need aluminum.

This grows the luminaire’s size and makes it more expensive. The bigger size of the luminaire makes logistics costs go up and increases the price for end user even more.

We have a better solution for cooling high power LEDs without the need for noisy fans or heavy heat sinks.

Furukawa Heat Pipe (HYC Series)

Heat pipe technology is traditionally being used in computers and for example in satellites. But now it is available in lighting.

Furukawa HYC Series uses heat pipe technology to transfer the heat and makes heat sinks more efficient in cooling the LED.

how heat pipe works

Its thermal conductivity is almost 200 times better compared to copper. This also allows the heat sink to be a lot smaller than we are used to.

Smaller heat sink reduces the weight of the luminaire dramatically. This reduces transportation costs as well as the amount of other materials needed.

The Heat Pipe effectively transfers heat from the heat source and as a result makes the cooling faster than ever.

Unlike many Chinese manufacturers, Furukawa uses oxygen-free copper in its Heat Pipes, which means that their lifetime is over 20 years.

Heat Pipe vs. No Heat Pipe

Cooling with and without the Heat pipe

Save Money and Environment with our aLED Light Engine

aLED Engine

aLED Light Engine (Furukawa Heat Pipe + Citizen COB + optics + aLED Driver)

As a great example, I want to introduce you our own aLED Light engine that uses Furukawa heat pipe with Citizen COB. aLED Light Engine produces over 40 000 lm and weights only 1kg (without driver and optics). And only 3.6kg with optics and driver.

By combining Citizen COB and heat pipe technology, you can build luminaires that:

  • Produce a lot of light
  • Are light in weight and small in size
  • Save environment
  • Are completely recyclable

Furukawa Heat Pipes are compatible with Citizen CLU04x and CLU05x COB LEDs.

Download an example of different combinations and datasheets for custom models with screw holes for Citizen COBs.

Download Here

Why Should You Choose the New aLED Module

We redesigned our aLED-modules based on customer and market feedback. Here is  a brief explanation on what is different compared to previous version. And why I think you should consider using aLED modules.

 

Figure 1. New aLED Modules with examples of different connector locations.

Better efficacy (159-191 lm/W)

We upgraded the SMD LEDs used in the modules to better suit our customers’ needs. aLED modules now have efficacy from 159 lm/W to 190 lm/W. Efficacy depends on the color temperature and you can see the efficacy by CCT here:

  • 2700K (174 lm/W)
  • 3000K (177 lm/W)
  • 4000K (185 lm/W)
  • 5000K (191 lm/W)

Better placement of LEDs

We have changed the design of our aLED module. LEDs are now placed on the center line of the module so the installation of optics is easier.

aLED modules dimensions have also changed. New modules are now either 279.2 mm or 558.4 mm in length and 20 mm or 40 mm in width. 

Different options for connectors

It is now possible to order aLED modules with connectors either on the frontside or on the backside. Traditionally the connectors have been on the frontside, but these new backside connectors allow you to hide the wires behind the module and inside the profile.

For longer luminaires, there is a possibility to use backline, so you won’t need long wires. Short wires to connect multiple modules together will be enough (figure 2).

Figure 2. a) How to connect modules without back line option. b) How to utilize the back line option of the aLED modules.

Long lifetime

Thanks to the upgraded LED, the lifetime of aLED modules has also increased. You can see the lifetime prediction below. But to be brief: at maximum TC temperature (85°C) the lifetime (L70B50) is over 100.000 hours (figure 3).

Fikure 3. The lifetime of aLED Module (L70B50)

Friendly to environment

On top of high efficacy and the possibility to save energy, aLED modules are also recyclable. You can recycle all parts of module, even the PCB.

In addition to all these changes aLED modules prices have also dropped to more competitive level.

You can find the technical details of 4000K modules from the table below. You can download the datasheets of these new modules by clicking here.

Product Code Color Temperature (CCT) Color Rendering (Ra) Luminous Flux (lm) Forward Current (mA) Voltage (V) Power (W) Efficacy (lm/W) Length (mm) Width (mm)
CALOSNU0405 4000 80 1182 600 11.6 7.0 170 279.2 20
CALOSNU0410 4000 80 1224 600 11.0 6.6 185 279.2 20
CALOLNU0805 4000 80 2363 600 23.2 13.9 170 558.4 20
CALOLNU0810 4000 80 2448 600 22.1 13.3 185 558.4 20
CALOLHU1610 4000 80 4895 600 44.1 26.5 185 558.4 40
CALOSND0405 4000 80 1182 600 11.6 7.0 170 279.2 20
CALOSND0410 4000 80 1224 600 11.0 6.6 185 279.2 20
CALOLND0805 4000 80 2363 600 23.2 13.9 170 558.4 20
CALOLND0810 4000 80 2448 600 22.1 13.3 185 558.4 20
CALOLHD1610 4000 80 4895 600 44.1 26.5 185 558.4 40

 

Download Datasheets

 

In addition to these new models, all our previous module models are also still available.

Thank You for Everyone at Elfack 2017

I would like to thank everyone who we met at the Elfack Exhibition in Gothenburg, Sweden.

We had some good conversations with our existing customers as well as new people. This year we tested the color quality of Citizen’s LEDs at our stand. We got many answers through our questionnaire and found out that many visitors were excited about this new way of lighting.

If you took part in the test, you will receive the test results soon. We will also share these results with the public a little later.

We had a chance to show you our new products and the feedback we got from you was very encouraging.  I went through all the products in my last blog post, and if you wish to download more information about them, you are most welcome to do so here.

The products displayed at Elfack include:

  • aLED Engine
  • Citizen Gen 6
  • AC COB
  • Citizen Vivid Series
  • Furukawa Heatpipe
  • Merrytek sensors
  • Letaron & aLED Drivers

Our personnel will contact you as agreed, if they haven’t already. In case you have anything to ask, you can contact us directly.

 

What We Are Presenting in Elfack?

Elfack exhibition will be held in Gothenburg, Sweden from 9th to 12th of May. As it has been with previous exhibitions, we will be releasing new products and presenting the latest technology at our stand.

This year we will introduce and present the following products at our stand F04:70.

aLED Engine

aLED Engine

aLED Light Engine

We designed aLED Engine for applications that require a lot of light. aLED Engine consists of Furukawa heat pipe and Citizen COB LED.

In addition you can also choose a suitable optics and LED driver for the light engine from our selection. Suitable drivers are available as on/off, 1-10V dimming and DALI dimming.

aLED Engine is also compatible with Merrytek sensors, which allow you to control the lighting as you wish.

The 300W engine produces 36.000 lm at 4.000K and weighs only 3,6 kg with a driver installed.

aLED Engine will be at our stand in Elfack. There you can see the engine in action and try it with a daylight sensor.

Download More Information

Furukawa HYC Series

Furukawa HYC Series uses heat pipe technology to transfer the heat and makes heat sinks more efficient in cooling the LED.

how heat pipe works

How Heat Pipe Works

Heat Pipe’s thermal conductivity is almost 200 times better compared to copper. This allows the heat sink to be a lot smaller than we are used to.

Smaller heat sink reduces the weight of the luminaire dramatically.

The heat pipes effectively transfer heat from the heat source throughout the whole heat sink cooling the heat source faster than ever.

Heat Pipe vs. No Heat Pipe

Heat Pipe vs. No Heat Pipe

Furukawa heat pipes are compatible with Citizen COBs.

Furukawa heat pipes will be at our stand so you can see and try how light they are.

Read more about Furukawa heatpipe from here.

aLED & Letaron Drivers

aLED Driver

aLED Driver

aLED and Letaron offer a versatile range of both constant current and constant voltage drivers from low to high power (from 1 W up to 600 W).

Ouw own aLED drivers are best suited for high power applications. They are all available in IP68 and can be ordered as on/off, 1-10V dimming or DALI dimming.

Letaron drivers are best suited for low power applications, although they are available up to 52W.

Letaron offers a variety of designs to suit your needs including round, rectangular and slim models.

The Letaron low power drivers are also compatible with OLED light sources.

aLED and Letaron drivers will be on at our stand so you can see and try them yourself.

Merrytek

Merrytek sensors

Merrytek offers a wide range of different sensors. Some sensors come with LED driver and some are independent and can be connected to LED driver.

Merreytek has products particularly designed for eg. homes, schools, stairways, warehouses, offices, parking garages and outdoor use.

Merrytek’s intelligent lighting control products include:

  • Microwave motion and daylight sensors
  • Dimmable LED drivers
  • LED drivers with intergrated sensors

There will be Merrytek products on display at our stand. We will have an aLED engine wiht Merrytek’s daylight sensor on our stand, so you can see how it functions.

Citizen Gen 6, AC COB &Vivid Series

Citizen released Gen 6 COB and AC COB earlier this year with improvements compared to the previous versions.

Thermal Resistance

Thanks to better heat resistance, you can use much smaller heat sink. Gen 4 on the left, Gen 5 on the middle and Gen 6 on the right.

For the new Vivid series we’ve prepared a demo wall at Elfack for you to examine the possibilities of color quality control in LED lighting.

Seminar about color quality

We will organize a seminar about color quality on the first day of the exhibition.

Color comparison Vivid COBColor Comparison Regular COB 3000K Ra80 vs. Vivid Brilliant

The seminar will take place on Tuesday 9th of May.
Time: 16:00-19:00
Place: Hotel Gothia Towers, Tower 1, meeting room R22-23

The program:

  • Doors open at 16:00
  • Coffee
  • Welcome / Arrant Light Oy by Janne Mäkinen, Managing Director / Arrant-Light Oy
  • Color Quality with CITIZEN by Kosuke Tsuchiya, Field Application Engineer / Citizen Electronics Co.
  • Demonstration and open discussion
  • Refreshments and snacks
  • Close at 19:00

Please sign up for the seminar as soon as possible or latest by April 30th. We have limited seats and there is room for the first 20 persons only.

Sign Up for Our Seminar

Welcome to visit our stand F04.70 at Elfack.

All datasheets and other material will be available from our website soon. If you wish to download material about these new products before the exhibition. You can do that here.

How to Choose Constant Current LED Driver for your Application [Infographic]

The selection of Constant Current driver is not always that simple, Esko wrote a post about it some time ago. You can read that here.

Below you can find an infographic about the same topic. If you like it, feel free to share.

How To Choose Constant Current Driver [Infograpgh]

How To Choose Constant Current Driver [Infographic]

Here is a link to our Lightbuilder.

Flicker in lighting

We get a lot of questions regarding flicker. People are asking what it is and what causes it. I decided to to some research and write a post about the topic. I have very little technical understanding and therefore I try to explain this in simple manner.

What is Flicker

You all know the effect when it is strong enough. Lights go out and on again in very short breaks. This used to be the problem of fluorescent tubes and at least I have learned that this is the time to change the lamp.

Flicker refers to quick and repeated changes in light intensity, which makes the light seem unsteady and broken. This effect is caused by variations in supply voltage or in the power line voltage.

These changes can be caused by dimming or for example by welding machines using high current. Usually voltage changes are quite small and don’t cause any harm to luminaires. However, even small changes can cause flicker and have an effect for people working in offices, schools etc.

Can you see the flicker

It depends. Human eye can see the flashing of the lights up to about 50 to 60 flashes/second (50Hz-60Hz), most sensitive frequency area for human eye is the range from 10Hz to 25Hz. When the frequency is higher that 60Hz most people can’t detect the flicker anymore. Some people have been known to see the flicker up to 100Hz.

In fact, fluorescent lights using magnetic ballasts have a flicker around 100-120Hz, which most people can’t see. This is because it is powered by ballasts with a frequency of 50Hz (60Hz in the US) and lamps flicker with the double frequency. When there is a problem with fluorescent lamp or with the ballast the flicker frequency drops below 100Hz (generally to the ballasts’ frequency) and it becomes visible to human eye.

Flicker from 100Hz to 500Hz can cause a stroboscopic effects, which means that you see objects in motion as series of still images. These kinds of lights are used in discos, but can be extremely dangerous in other environments.

When the flicker reaches a frequency around 2 kilohertz, we can no longer detect it at all.

You can see the flickering in higher frequencies for example with a camera. Although this depends little on the device. The better cameras don’t necessarily show any flicker.

Flicker seen with camera

Flicker seen with camera

Does it harm you?

So this is the big question. Flickering lights have been know to effect headaches, eye strain and fatigue. In Some countries there are laws regulating the maximum flicker in certain environments. For example in Russia there are regulations for schools, offices etc.

Some countries are starting to realize these health problems and have started to regulate the maximum flicker in luminaires.

Measuring Flicker

There is no standard for measuring flicker at least not at the moment. The Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) has developed two metrics to be used to measure flicker: Flicker percent and flicker index.

MF250N Flicker meter

MF250N Flicker meter

Flicker Percent

Flicker percent is the most commonly used metric to measure flicker. This metric tells how big difference there is in one flicker cycle. So it tells that how much does the amount of light drop from the maximum. The 100% flicker means that the light goes completely off at some point and 0% flicker means completely steady light.

For example Russian standards regulate that the flicker of a luminaire must not be over 20% and in some environments the flicker must be 0%.

So Flicker percent is calculated(from the below picture): (A-B)/(A+B)x100%

Flicker Index

Waveform

Flicker index

Flicker index is a little bit more hard to explain. The index has a value between 0 and 1. One being the maximum and zero the minimum.

Index takes the average lighting output into account. Basically the index compares the area above the average light output to the area of the whole cycle.

Flicker index is therefore calculated: AREA 1/(AREA 1 + AREA 2)

The smaller the index is, the smaller the flicker is.

Devices

Luckily there are devices that can measure the flicker. For example UPRtek’s MF250N LED Meter is made for measuring all aspects of flicker. You can use it to  measure both of these metrics as well as the frequency of the flicker.

More information on this meter you can request here.

Why does LED Flicker?

The problem with LEDs is that they differ a lot from older lighting technologies. Tero wrote a post about LEDs and the basics behind this, so I won’t delve into that with much detail.

To be short, if LED is supplied with a constant current, it won’t flicker. But the current will have to be really constant.

The most common reason for LED flicker is a bad LED Driver. If the driver fails to provide constant current, the led that it powers will flicker.

As the driver converts the AC to DC, there will be some ripple, which will cause the frequency to jump typically to the double (as it was with fluorescent lamps). This means that the LEDs waveform will follow the driver’s waveform.

Flicker on drivers is called ripple. Basically it is a synonym for flicker.

Other reason for LED Flicker is dimming. If the dimmer controls the LED with lower frequency than 200Hz, it will cause significant flicker. This is due to the fact that some dimmers alternate the current that the LED is supplied with.

How to reduce flicker in LED applications

Well, I think that it’s kind of self-explanatory: get a driver with lower ripple. As I mentioned the driver is the key to the amount of flicker. You will need to think that whether the application can tolerate some flicker or not. Generally these low drivers cost more than the ones with high ripple. Its worth noticing that every driver has some kind of ripple.

If you have any comments, please feel free to leave your comment below. If you found this useful, please share this post.

What is aLED?

We released a new brand for our products; aLED. At first this brand is used along with our led modules, but later there will be more products to be labelled aLED.

There might be some people, possibly you, wondering what does aLED stand for? And why did we decide to create such a brand? Let me tell you.

aLED was formed during the spring and summer of 2014. There were many reasons behind the decision to create the brand and in this post I’m going open up those reasons.

Logo for the new aLED brand

Logo for the new aLED brand

  1. Warranty

We wanted to be able to give our customers a clear warranty. There can be many parties in the manufacturing process of a LED module. There is the PCB manufacturer, LED manufacturer, connector manufacturer etc. And all they give a different warranties and different conditions for those warranties. We wanted to give our customers a straightforward warranty:

aLED Module will last for at least 5 years. If it breaks while being used in a proper way before that, we will make it up to you.

  1. Delivery time

We got tired of the fact that the estimation of the delivery time for LED modules is guessing at best. PCBs are coming on one day, LEDs at another day and connectors on another. The company manufacturing the actual modules has time for production two months from now. We, and more importantly, our customers can never know when they get their products. We wanted to make this clear:

aLED Modules will be shipped in 48 hours after the purchase order.

aLED Module

aLED Module

  1. Variations in chromaticity

Our customers want to have guarantees that the module they order is actually near the right nominal color temperature. We have had these issues before and we know that everyone has had these issues. With the quality of the LEDs we use we can now guarantee the minimal variations in chromaticity.  So when you order your first module, all the following modules will have very little variation in chromaticity. To get an LED to exactly to a certain color temperature is near impossible, but we are working towards this.

  1. Right components

To be able to guarantee the quality of a LED module, all the components must be top quality. The modules are as good as the weakest link. We have taken a lot of time and effort to find the best possible components: the best PCBs, the best connectors, the best LED components and the best place to manufacture those modules.

  1. Customization possibilities

We know that our customers are different. For some the standard modules will be good enough and they can stand out with their luminaire design, price or some other factors. For some customers, the shape and type of the module is THE THING. That is the reason that we can offer customized modules to you. If you need soldered wires instead of connectors: you can have them. If you need customize shape with certain light distribution: you can have it. If you need anything else: you can have it. Delivery time might be a bit longer, but all the other guarantees still stand even for a customized module.

LED Module, which can be used in luminaire needing good light distribution.

Square shaped aLED Module.

  1. Best price

Everyone wants the perfect product for a perfect price. That’s what we have been aiming for. We have optimized the supply chain and negotiated good deals with component manufacturers. That is the reason we can offer you the best possible price.

These all might sound obvious, but they are not. We know that there has been problems and we have even had those problems ourselves. That is the main reason behind the aLED brand. We want to give you, our customers, a certain level of guarantee. We want to make the selection of LED module as safe and easy as possible.