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Illumicare
09-30-2010, 12:16 AM
There has been some discussion here about LED lamps and the longevity of their components when used in the harsh applications like Landscape Lighting. Will the components used in the manufacture of the lamps last as long as the rated lamp life?

I have had a couple of inquiries about the composition of the pins used in our MR16 and BiPin LED lamps. I am happy to report that the pins we use are nickel plated brass. Not only are they excellent conductors but they should not corrode over the life of the lamp.

You can expect to see some very big news on the product development side of things very soon!

Have a great day

James

steveparrott
09-30-2010, 09:28 AM
The possible corrosion of pin-type lamps and sockets (or any type socket) with LED's is a valid concern. Twenty years is a long time. We use the highest quality pins and socket contacts (even matching nickel pins to nickel contacts to prevent electrolytic corrosion). Still, we've seen socket failure due to corrosion within 5 years in tropical climates. In temperate climates such failures are rare.

Not trying to disparage any integrated LED lamp maker, but I'm guessing that pin/socket corrosion may be the main limiting factor in LED life for hot/moist environments.

Alan B
09-30-2010, 11:43 AM
The possible corrosion of pin-type lamps and sockets (or any type socket) with LED's is a valid concern. Twenty years is a long time. We use the highest quality pins and socket contacts (even matching nickel pins to nickel contacts to prevent electrolytic corrosion). Still, we've seen socket failure due to corrosion within 5 years in tropical climates. In temperate climates such failures are rare.

Not trying to disparage any integrated LED lamp maker, but I'm guessing that pin/socket corrosion may be the main limiting factor in LED life for hot/moist environments.


I agree. I also agree with James approach of potting.

If there is concern over pins/sockets corroding in a moist environment (where nickel plated or not), why is there not concern by people over an integrated micro circuit board corroding in the same 5-10-20 year period?

The integrated circuits and their accompanying soldered parts and metal pins are equally susceptible, if anything more temperamental to micro corrosion than thick lamp pins and socket contacts. These circuits exist on ALL LED's integrated fixtures AND on retrofit lamp LED's. I get surprised that people (customers and vendors) do ROI calculations with the assumption these components are going to last 10+ years in an wet environment next to the ground.

That being said. There is pent up demand for LED's. End customers want it, contractors want it. Volt will offer a solution, however heat and corrosion have been the main areas we have been addressing.

Regarding pins and sockets, all Volt fixtures come with sockets pre-greased which is very important if you want to limit corrosion on the pins and sockets. If your manu doesn't pregrease, it should be something that should be done in the field and during re-lamping.

Sincerely,

Alan

Illumicare
09-30-2010, 01:20 PM
The possible corrosion of pin-type lamps and sockets (or any type socket) with LED's is a valid concern.

Not trying to disparage any integrated LED lamp maker, but I'm guessing that pin/socket corrosion may be the main limiting factor in LED life for hot/moist environments.

Thanks Steve. I would suggest to those who are installing any type of lamp in a hot/moist environment to use a dielectric grease compound on both their sockets and their lamp pins. This can pose an issue with high heat lamps like Halogen MR16s but is not an issue at all with our cool running LED lamps.

I agree. I also agree with James approach of potting. All of our driver circuits are potted in epoxy to reduce / eliminate moisture issues.

If there is concern over pins/sockets corroding in a moist environment (where nickel plated or not), why is there not concern by people over an integrated micro circuit board corroding in the same 5-10-20 year period?

The integrated circuits and their accompanying soldered parts and metal pins are equally susceptible, if anything more temperamental to micro corrosion than thick lamp pins and socket contacts. These circuits exist on ALL LED's integrated fixtures AND on retrofit lamp LED's. I get surprised that people (customers and vendors) do ROI calculations with the assumption these components are going to last 10+ years in an wet environment next to the ground.

That being said. There is pent up demand for LED's. End customers want it, contractors want it. Volt will offer a solution, however heat and corrosion have been the main areas we have been addressing.

All of our LED lamps have been designed with thermal management and moisture proofing in mind. We are now working at obtaining an IP rating on our LED lamp products and we already have the coolest operating LED MR16 on the market.

Regarding pins and sockets, all Volt fixtures come with sockets pre-greased which is very important if you want to limit corrosion on the pins and sockets. If your manu doesn't pregrease, it should be something that should be done in the field and during re-lamping.

Sincerely,

Alan


In the next few weeks you will see our launch of a completely new line of Miniature LED lamps. Omni-directional SCB, S8 Wedge, T5 Wedge, G5.3 BiPin and G4 BiPin... all with integrated heat sinks, thermal management and moisture proofing. Each designed specifically for use in LV outdoor lighting applications.