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to the lamp at the start and throughout the operation. •Ballasts vary greatly in complexity. They can be as simple as a series resistor as commonly used with small neon lamps. •For higher-power installations, too much energy would be wasted in a resistive ballast, so alternatives are used that depend upon the reactance of inductors, capacitors, or both. Finally, ballasts can be as complex as the computerized, remote-controlled electronic ballasts used with fluorescent lamps.
Why an Electronic Ballast is Needed
A lighting ballast is necessary to operate discharge lights because they have negative resistance. The discharge light sources are unable to regulate the amount of current that passes through them. A lighting ballast must be used to control current flow; otherwise the light source could fail .
Electronic Lamp Ballast...
Uses solid state electronic circuitry to provide the proper starting and operating electrical condition to power one or more fluorescent lamps and more recently HID lamps. Usually change the frequency of the power from the standard mains (e.g, 50Hz in India) frequency to 20,000 Hz or higher, substantially eliminating the “Stroboscopic Effect”u of flicker (100 or 120 Hz, twice the line frequency) associated with fluorescent lighting . The lamps actually operate at about 9% higher efficacy above approximately 10 kHz
Because of the high frequency of operation, electronic ballasts are generally smaller, lighter, and more efficient (and thus run cooler) than line frequency magnetic ballasts
Electronic ballasts are often based on the SMPS topology, first rectifying the input power and then chopping it at a high frequency. Advanced electronic ballasts may allow dimming via pulse-width modulation
Why all the Hype about Electronic Ballasts?
Higher light output than electromagnetic ballasts at the same power input level . Electronic ballast manufacturers have developed a variety of ballast types for the various available lamps . The familiar “hum” of electromagnetic ballasts has all but been eliminated . Color rendering has improved . Lamp flicker has been greatly reduced . Further energy savings can be realized by reducing the heating load on the system.
How Do Bulbs Work?
The modern light bulb, which hasn't changed drastically since Edison's model, is made up of only a handful of parts. Light is a form of energy that can be released by an atom. It is made up of many small particle-like packets that have energy and momentum but no mass. Called photons.
At the base, they have two metal contacts The metal contacts are attached to two stiff wires, attached to a thin metal filament The filament sits in the middle of the bulb, held up by a glass mount. The wires and the filament are housed in a glass bulb, which is filled with an inert gas, such as Argon.
The bulb is hooked up to a power supply An electric current flows from one contact to the other As the electrons zip along through the filament, they are constantly bumping into the atoms that make up the filament. The energy of each impact vibrates an atom -- in other words, the current heats the atoms up. Bound electrons in the vibrating atoms may be boosted temporarily to a higher energy level. When they fall back to their normal levels, the electrons release the extra energy in the form of photons. The filament in a light bulb is made of a long, incredibly thin length of tungsten metal.
Necessity For Current Limiting
Ballasts are most commonly needed when an electrical circuit or device presents a negative (differential) resistance to the supply. If such a device were connected to a constant-voltage power supply, it would draw an ever-increasing amount of current until it was destroyed or caused the power supply to fail. To prevent this, a ballast provides a positive resistance or reactance that limits the ultimate flow of current to an appropriate level. In this way, the 'ballast' provides for the proper operation of the negative resistance device. Examples of such negative-resistance devices are gas discharge tubes and lamps.
Starting of an Electronic Ballast
Electronic Ballasts use three methods of starting: instant start, rapid start, and programmed start. The first two methods also are available in electromagnetic ballasts, while the last one is offered only by electronic ballasts.
Playing with an Electronic Ballast
Instant start provides the most energy-efficient operation for T8 lamps and should be used in applications where the lamps will operate more than three hours per start. Rapid start ballasts are intended to prolong lamp life, with a 15% to 25% increase in switch cycles before failure, depending on individual ballast design. Programmed start ballasts are best suited for applications where the lamps will operate less than three hours per start and offer an increase in switch cycles before failure of 100% or more over the rapid start ballasts.
Electromagnetic ballasts limit the flow of current to the light but do not change the frequency of the input power. The lamp then illuminates on each half-cycle of the power source. This is why many fluorescent and neon lights visibly flicker. Since the light illuminates on half-cycles, the rate of flicker is twice the frequency of the power source, meaning the light will flicker at 100Hz or 120Hz. A lead-lag lighting ballast can minimize flicker when connected to two lamps by alternating the flow of current to them: one leading the frequency of the input power and the other lagging behind it.
Comparing Electronic and Electromagnetic Ballasts
MAGNETIC Core & Coil Rated Lamp Life 20,000 hours ELECTRONIC Electronic, microprocessor Rated Lamp Life 20,000 hours
•Mean Lumens Good lighting systems are specified on the basis of mean or average light output of the lamp. This mean is defined as the light output, measured in lumens, at 40% of the lamps rated life. •Cost of Ownership - Long Term Savings* While the initial cost of a magnetic ballast is considerably less than a high performance electronic ballast, the over-all cost of ownership is much higher.
Mean Calculated @ Mean Calculated @ 40% of rated lamp 40% of rated lamp life life 8,000 hours 8,000 hours Lumen Maintenance Lumen Maintenance (Output @ Mean) (Output @ Mean) 64% of initial 86% of initial lumens lumens
Installing more fixtures means... Higher installation labor Higher material costs Higher energy costs
Install up to 36% fewer FUTURE BRITES Achieve the same light levels Lower cost of ownership
HPF ELECTRONIC BALLAST
Self-Oscillating Dimmable Electronic Ballast
Flicker And Stroboscopic Effect The mercury arc in a fluorescent lamp operated on a 60 hertz alternating current goes on and off 120 times per second. The light from the lamp would go out completely except that the phosphors have some phosphorescent or "carry-over" action. That is, they continue to glow for a short time after the existing radiation is cut off. This variation in light output is known as flicker. The flicker rate over the length of the lamp is 120 cycles per second. At the ends of the lamp, each alternate flash is comparatively weak. This gives an effective rate of 60 flashes per second.
The 120-cycle flicker is too fast to be visible. The 60cycle flicker can be detected, but only by the periphery of the retina. For this reason, lamp flicker is seldom noticed except when observing the ends of the lamps out of the corner of the eyes or related equipment.
Presented by: Siddharth Chauhan 061401 ELECTRICAL
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