What Is LED Lighting?
LED Lighting incorporates the use of LEDs as a source of illumination. Incandescent and fluorescent lamps make up most lighting used in the environment today. Our LEDs can be incorporated into traditional lighting fixtures and can be used like most other lamps. LEDs are much more energy efficient than incandescent, halogen (resulting in about 90 % savings) or fluorescent lamps (50 % savings).
LEDs or Light Emitting Diodes are semi-conductor devices that convert electrical energy to light by using the movement of electrons. LEDs were first invented in Russia in the 1920´s. They were put into practical use in the United States in the 1960´s by General Electric, and Hewlett-Packard used them in its early calculators.
There are numerous consumer advantages of LEDs over incandescent or fluorescent lamps. LED lights consume much less energy. They are 300 percent more efficient than a compact fluorescent lamp (CFL), and 1,000 percent more efficient than incandescent lamps. A typical 60 watt incandescent bulb may last about 1000 hours, but LEDs have a very long life, about 50 000 hours of use and at the end of their lifetime, still shine at 70 % of their original intensity. Good quality LEDs don’t burn out or flicker, they simply fade. This implies that LED lights can be used up to 8 hours a day, for 13 years at 70 % intensity. LED lighting contains no mercury or other toxins. LEDs do not emit any ultra violet (UV) light, so they do not attract insects and dust particles. As these bulbs do not generate much heat, they are cool to touch, thus alleviating the worry of burns. Since LEDs do not generate radio frequency waves, they do not interfere with radio or television broadcasts. These lamps are also resistant to vibrations and shocks.
Unfortunately there is also a downside to LED lighting too. Good LED lights are more expensive to buy. They are heat sensitive, so if they are not used with a steady and consistent electronic and a good heat-dissipation design, they can stop working or fade quicker. They are usually used in directional lighting and now also for general lighting.
Very small LEDs are often used in clocks and watches and as indicator lights in cars. They have fast switching capabilities, so they are often used in remote controls and lights that are turned on and off frequently. Due to their directional nature they are best used under kitchen counters, in stairways and hallways, or as reading lamps, landscape lighting, and night lights.
LED lighting comes in many forms, including screw-in light bulbs, flashlights, strips or clusters., As with other types of lighting, they are simple to install, but be careful what you buy, there are a lot differences in quality. Cheap LEDs can be found in DIY-stores or where consumers buy other bulbs and lights.