What about induction?

2013-01-07

What about induction?

Ask anyone about lighting specification and design these day days and they will probably talk about LEDs, but what about the other lighting technologies? What about Induction?

Induction lighting is nothing new – it’s been around for more then 80 years, evolving over the same period as incandescent, and companies have completed a range of successful projects with induction lamps. So why aren’t there more induction lighting projects? After all, it offers some attractive benefits; life expectancy is 100,000 hours, the failure rate is less than 2% and it achieves a color-rendering index of more than 80.

 

Table 1: INDUCTION LAMPS IN A WAREHOUSE APPLICATION

 

Induction

LED

Number of luminaires

22

22

Power (W)

250

150

Luminous flux (lm)

360,302

310,552

Luminous efficacy (lm/W)

65,51

94,11

Average lux

171

145

Luminaire cost

$800

$875

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When making the decision about which lighting technology should be chosen, it is in part an investment issue. And based on the comparison below we can determine the most efficient solution for a warehouse that is looking to replace it s22 existing 400W HID lamps that operate for 3,000 hours a year.

TABLE 2: COMPARISON OF INDUCTION AND LED TECHNOLOGIES

Luminaire

Annual energy use

Energy saving

Cost saving

Luminaire cost

ROI

400W HID

31,680kWh

-

-

-

-

250W Induction

16,500kWh

15,180kWh

$2,400

$1,745

7 years, 3 months

150W LED

9,900  kWh

21,780kWh

$3,455

$19,200

5 years, 7 months

 

 Given the 3,000 annual operating hours, each of the technologies has a reasonable life. But if we look at the life claims, the LED’s will have to be replaced at least once during the life of the Induction luminaires. This would result in both a luminaire and installation cost being incurred, not to mention the potential for interruptions to work. So as the number of annual operating hours increases the argument for induction gets stronger.


A number of factors in certain applications that might make induction lighting worth considering are;

Risk, Low maintenance and replacement necessity makes it a good solution for areas where there might be a risk involved in these processes. A good example is replacing a luminaire above a chemical operation.

Height, The focus is clearly on the cost of maintenance. With extreme life and low failure rates induction lighting is a good option for applications such as atriums, escalators, warehouses, factories, and cold rooms.

Access, Tunnel lighting has significant maintenance costs and associated risks. Extended life with low failure rate has obvious benefits.

Quality of light, For tunnel lighting specifically, induction lighting ensures minimal maintenance for over seven years at LM75. 

Nikola Tesla, who devised many of the principles of induction lighting, described it as ‘yielding light of indescribable beauty and softness’. The soft light described provides a glare-free environment that is particularly important near tunnel entrances. The robust nature of induction luminaires ensures the life claims are achieved.

 

As with other lighting technologies, the key to achieving the benefits of induction lighting is the specification of a quality product to ensure that the long life claims are achieved. Although the industry seems completely infatuated with LEDs, we should not forget that there are other technologies that may be more appropriate and deliver superior lighting installations.

 

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