Maintenance Strategy of LED Lighting System Proposed by ELS

Universal Driver Dedicated to Remote Power Supply

Universal Driver(UD) produced by ELS is a LED power driver designed for more effective maintenance of LED lighting system. UD can supply LED luminaires with electrical power remotely, keeping power quality stable and optimally up to 200 meters. This allows the power units to be installed at easy access and safe locations, to supply the power to LED luminaires located in difficult access area like high ceilings.

All equipment comprising a building is managed under suitable maintenance plan. Lighting system also would be run best by proper maintenance work. For example, we should replace lamps being out of order, or make it clean to prevent losing brightness. This maintenance plan for lighting system is quite related to the lifetime or failure rate of the system. Because higher failure rate or shorter lifetime means more maintenance works needed and higher maintenance costs.

Since the introduction of LED lighting, the most talked about benefits have been its long lifetime and efficiency. However, the long lifetime of LED lighting has often been misunderstood or even misquoted. Let’s look at some facts regarding the lifetime of LED luminaires.

Generally, for traditional lamps, the end of life is evident: there is no light. They cannot produce due to broken filament or worn-out electrode. So many people have the experience of replacing these dead lamps. On the other hand, LED sources survive over long time and they even generate light after its rated lifetime. They just have faded brightness or shifted color. In fact, we could still use them at the end. For that reason, LED sources compared to traditional lamps certainly have the characteristic of long lifetime. There is still another side much neglected.

Have you ever changed the ballast of a fluorescent lamp? Most of you may not have that kind of memory because the lifetime of the ballast is much longer than that of the lamp. It means we barely see its failure. But it is quite different in LED luminaires. Although LED sources last quite long (with most people quoting at 50,000 hours under lab conditions), power devices of LED luminaires have relatively shorter lifetime, especially when mediocre quality products are used to save cost. And the failure of power devices leads to the death of luminaires. That is we have much higher probability of having to replace power units rather than LED sources. This has been the main objective for the birth of ELS’ new maintenance strategy for LED lighting system using Universal Driver.

The most failure part in LED Luminaires comes from Power Components: NGLIA

Now we’re going to take a close look at the failure rate of LED lighting fixtures. Normally, we can structurally divide a LED lighting fixture into LED engine: LED package and Heatsink, power supply, and case. A report on LED luminaire lifetime from NGLIA: Next Generation Lighting Industry Alliance says the biggest factor of failure in LED lighting fixtures is coming from heat. It presents statistical results showing the most failure part is the power supply. Much of the failure modes in power supply link to catastrophic failure like shutting off. That is, when it comes to maintenance plan of LED lighting system, we should firstly consider the failure rate of power supply.

LEDs retain heat when they convert electricity to light. Many of electronic components in the power supply also generate heat when they run. Heat from each part makes mutual damage and affects efficiency and performance of the lighting fixture directly. In general, we do see that the LED engine and power supply are being put into one body case for ease of installation. However, this often leads to the crucial problem of increasing failure rate by mutual heating, especially when the components have become aged.

To solve that problem, we dissipate heat from LED sources using heatsink; design a variety of structure to eliminate mutual heating; being required using luminaires within rated thermal range; and so forth. Despite of all our efforts, dealing with heat properly is not easy work. The report from NGLIA shows this.

Put LEDs apart from Power supply to eliminate mutual heating

ELS’ UD technology puts the LED engine apart from the power supply at a long distance, separating two different heat sources and much reducing failure. Our field experience over a large number of installations has clearly shown a well-proven lower failure rate over time.

Generally, remote power supply from LEDs induces problem in power quality like voltage drop or instability. This is also one reason of underperformed LED lighting system. We have engineered our UD system approach to overcome this challenge up to a distance of 200 meters. As a result, ELS proposes maintenance strategy of LED lighting system as below.

Locate power devices at one, easy access place for maintenance

You can install LED engines, which have lower failure rate, on the difficult access areas like high ceilings or rooftops. On the other hand, you can place power devices such as drivers and power supplies together at an easy to access location. This has an added benefit to industries such as hospitality since access for maintenance can now be available at any hour of the day without disturbance to the guests.

When it comes to outdoor applications in which the operating environment is harsh, the power devices using the UD technology can now be placed indoor under controlled ambient conditions, much reducing the failure rate and maintenance cost.

For large outdoor facades in which traditionally large numbers of drives have to be installed outdoor, the UD system enables a huge reduction of the number of drivers and allows the installation of the drivers to be indoor such as inside risers instead.

For indoor applications, part of the cooling loads attributed to the power devices can now be eliminated by placing them in remote service locations.

We have explained the maintenance strategy using ELS’ Universal Driver for LED lighting system. Of course, a variety of strategies are out there by application or product features. But we’re more than ready to help you find better ways and make profits in running innovative lighting systems. Please do not hesitate to call ELS. You can read the detail specifications of the UD here: Click!

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