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Exterior Lighting ●From previous page


source emits 1,000 lumens when new and 700 lumens after 50,000 typical hours of use, it has a lumen maintenance of 70 per cent at 50,000 hours. In other words, it has an L70 of 50,000 hours.


Proof positive LED luminaires sold on the European market should, by law, carry the CE mark, which is a statement by the manufacturer that the product complies with all the relevant European Union (EU) legislation, including product safety standards and directives. Buyers should, however, be aware that a CE designation is country specific, therefore products with CE marking from outside the EU may not have had the same level, and intensity, of testing performed on them as those within the EU. A manufacturer should also be able to provide full photometric and electrical data, as well as conformance certificates, and it is vital to ‘do the math’ when it comes to a guarantee. For example, if a manufacturer is going to offer a life of 50,000 hours for a product there must be at least a five year guarantee – after all there are 8,760 hours in a year. Some manufacturers state 50,000 hours of life but only provide a one year guarantee. The overall lifespan of an LED luminaire will depend on the build quality of the product, the components used and whether it has been installed to the highest standards. Design issues include poor thermal management, the use of low quality capacitors, overdriving LED chips, thermal driver failures, mechanical failures and insufficient bonding between the LED and external mount. Reputable companies should be able to give guarantees on the life of the equipment, in particular the drivers. Furthermore, it is important to establish whether any claims are


for system performance rather than chip performance though, and whether values have been measured in the luminaire at realistic ambient temperatures.


Protect and survive The environment where an LED luminaire is to be located is a key factor. A product’s ingress protection (IP) rating classifies the degree of protection provided against the intrusion of solid objects, dust, accidental contact, and water in electrical enclosures. A product’s IP rating consists of the letters IP followed by two digits. The first digit indicates the level of protection that the enclosure provides against access to hazardous parts such as electrical conductors


and moving parts, and the ingress of solid foreign objects. The second digit denotes protection of the equipment inside the enclosure against harmful ingress of water. The higher the number, the higher the protection offered.


Equally important is an IK rating, which is also


known as an impact protection rating. This indicates the degree of protection provided by enclosures for electrical equipment against external mechanical impacts in accordance with international standards such as IEC 62262. The IK rating scale identifies the ability of an enclosure to resist impact energy levels measured in joules (J). IK uses a number from 00 to 10 – IK00 offers no protection, while IK10 means that a device is protected against 20J of impact. This is equivalent to the impact of a 5kg mass dropped from 400mm above a surface.


Moving on up According to research conducted by The Lighting Industry Association (LIA), the market share of LED versus non-LED lighting in the commercial sector exceeded a tipping point of 50 per cent in 2015. Furthermore, it has stated that while growth is now slowing, LED technology is expected to approach 95 per cent penetration by 2022, as buildings of all kinds utilise it in new and innovative ways. Trusted and knowledgeable wholesalers that can be relied on for sound advice about testing, lifetime expectation, standard compliance and the scope of any guarantee, and which offer an excellent support service, will therefore remain popular with electrical contractors.


thornlighting.co.uk/en-gb


LED luminaires sold on the European market should, by law, carry the CE mark, which is a statement by the manufacturer that the product


complies with all the relevant European Union (EU) legislation, including product safety standards and directives.


16 | electrical wholesalerOctober 2019 ewnews.co.uk


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