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ATEX and IEC Ex Flame-proof Explosion Proof Lighting & Equipment
Explosion Proof Lights
Explosion Proof Motors - Motors for Hazardous Locations
Industrial and Vaporproof Emergency Failsafe Lighting
Industrial Cord Reels and Tool Taps
Industrial Work Area Heaters
Machine Vision Lights
Megatower™
QC Series Industrial Portable Lighting - Quick Change Mount
Rig Lights
Stadium lights
String Lights and Temporary Light Stringers
Tank Cleaning Lights
Three Phase Motor Soft Starters
Vapor Proof LED Lights
Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs)
Vehicle Mounting Plates
Workboat Light Fixtures & Lighting Equipment
Yacht Engine Room Lights
Color Changing LED RGB Lighting
Explosion Proof Cord Reels
GOLIGHT Spotlights
Larson FUTURE - Lease Lighting
Remote Area Lighting and Scene Lights
Utility Bucket Mount, Receiver Hitch & Trailer Mount Lighting
Aevum Control Lighting and Equipment - IIoT
Butane and Solvent Extraction Room Lighting and Equipment
DC to DC Transformers and Power Supplies
Explosion Proof Fans & Blowers
Explosion Proof Paint Spray Booth Approved Lights
Explosion Proof String Lights
Explosion Proof Switchgear & Controls
Fleet Service Lights and Lighting Equipment
Industrial Equipment Trailers
Industrial Handlamps & Droplights
ISO 14644/FS-209E Clean Room Lighting
LED Blasting Lights
Night Time Fishing Lights
Portable AC Power Supply Units
Portable Power Distribution Panels
Power Distribution Panels with KVA Transformers
Self-Contained Lighting
Service Pit Lighting
Solar Generators & Solar Powered Lighting
Agricultural Farm Equipment Lighting & Beacons
Explosion Proof Cameras & Surveillance Systems
Explosion Proof Emergency Lights
Explosion Proof Heaters
Garage & Gas Station Canopy Lights
LED Grow Lights
LED Lights
NDT Ultraviolet Lights
Portable Hazardous Location Lighting
Radio Communication Towers and Equipment
Salt Water Processing Equipment
Shelter & Tent Lighting
Thermal Monitoring Cameras and Systems
48V LED Equipment Lights
ATEX Rated Explosion Proof Lights
Automotive Lighting
Class Rated Signals, Alarms, and Systems
Hazardous Location Area Lights and Portable Lighting
HID Equipment Lights
Hot Work Permit Lighting and Equipment
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Industrial lasers
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Light Towers
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24 Volt Military Lights
Disaster Relief / First Responders / Search & Rescue Lighting
Plastic Handcuff Key
110/120 Volt Flood Lights
Post Mount Spotlights
Magnetic Work Lights
Crank-up Light Masts
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Intrinsically Safe Lights
Military Flashlights
LED Waterproof Lanterns
Work Area Lights
12 Volt Flood Lights
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Boat Spotlights
New Boat Lights
HID Boat Lights
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Remote Control Lights
Control Lights
Tow Lights
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NEW Lights and New Products
Evaporative Coolers
Police Equipment
AC/DC Transformers
Power Supplies
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Military Spotlights 24V
Infrared Filters, Covert Covers, and Blackout IR Lenses
Military Equipment
Ultralife Batteries
Remote Control Pan Tilt Base
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Larson Electronics Spotlights
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Replacement Lamps
Cords - Brackets
Portable Wheeled Generators
Non-Hazardous Location Extension Cords / Plugs / Outlets
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HID Work Lights
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Acro Lights HID Lights
Halogen Lights
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Acro Light Flashlight
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Powerlight Flashlight
HID Flashlights
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LED Status Lights
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Flashlight Holder
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Flashlights
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Gifts For Men
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New 12 / 24 Volt Lights
Explosion Proof Accessories and Replacement Parts
Explosion Proof Lighting
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Explosion Proof Phones and Intercoms
Explosion Proof Extension Cords
Black Friday & Cyber Monday Specials
Crane Lights
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General Light Rentals
Light Tower and Light Plant Rentals
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Power Plant Lighting
Refinery lights
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Food Grade Safe Lights
Film and Entertainment Lights
Handheld Meters and Devices
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Mining Lights
Ship Yard Lights
Work Site Lighting
         

   
11/07/12 The Various Forms of High Intensity Discharge Lighting

Article- November 2012 By Larson Electronics.com

1000 Watt Metal Halide

Larson Electronics 1000 Watt Metal Halide Flood Light



HID lamps are one of the most powerful types of luminary available. Their high intensity makes them a favorite choice for applications where a large amount of area must be illuminated, but not all HID lighting systems are them same, which can cause some problems unless fully understood.


HID lamps produce light by using a high voltage electrical arc to ignite gases and metallic salts within a glass bulb. Once this ignition takes place a prodigious amount of light is produced in a relatively small area. The initial ignition voltage required to produce ignition is quite high, however, once ignition takes place it is only necessary to maintain a much lower voltage to sustain it. The types of gases and salts used in the lamp have a direct bearing on the color and quality of the light produced, which has resulted in a few main types of HID lighting which have achieved prominence over the years.


The wide variances in voltages required to operate an HID lamp necessitates the use of a ballast to manage these voltages. These ballasts provide the high initial voltage spike necessary to cause ignition, then provide the much lower current needed for constant operation. Older style magnetic ballasts were effective, but reduced performance due to their slow warmup times and tendency to wear out fairly quickly. Newer electronic ballasts have greatly reduced the amount of time it takes an HID unit to reach full power and provide a much longer operational life.


Here we will go over these various types and touch on their different advantages and drawbacks.



The oldest and once most common form of HID lighting is the mercury vapor lamp. As their name implies, these lamps rely on mercury vapor to produce their light. The mercury in these lamps is a liquid at normal temperatures, and becomes vaporized at higher temperatures. These lamps also contain a small amount of argon gas which helps to facilitate the ignition process. When current is applied to the mercury vapor lamp, the argon gas is ionized, creating an electrical arc between electrodes contained within the lamp. This arc heats the mercury, which in turn vaporizes and causes another arc between a second primary of electrodes, then creating the high intensity output associated with these lamps. This process takes several minutes, which means these lamps are slow starting and cannot be quickly turned off and on;  they require a cool down period between on and off cycles. The light produced by these lamps is bluish in color and renders colors poorly, making these lamps more effective in applications such as street or parking lot lighting. Mercury vapor lamps are fairly efficient, producing about 60 lumens per watt, but also contain toxic mercury making them more difficult to dispose of. As of 2008 the United States government has banned the production of mercury vapor lamps, as a result, expect to see these lamps become obsolete in the very near future.


High pressure sodium lamps produce light that orange/yellow in color. Similar in operation to other HID lamps, HPS lamps contain xenon gas along with a mixture of mercury and sodium which is ignited to produce light. HPS lamps are extremely efficient, producing around 150 lumens per watt, however, their color quality is so poor that their use is limited to applications such as street lighting and exterior building and parking lot illumination. Areas illuminated by HPS take on a reddish orange tinted appearance, and contrasting and object details are poorly rendered as well. HPS lamps tend to lose a lot of efficiency as they age, and problems with flickering and erratic on/off operation occur as well. As with mercury vapor lamps, HPS lamps contain toxic mercury, increasing the hazards of disposal.


Low pressure sodium lamps are the most efficient form of lighting available producing approximately 200 lumens per watt. LPS lamps produce light over a very short part of the light spectrum in the reddish orange range. They have the worst color rendering and contrasting properties, and distinguishing colors such as red, orange yellow and white under the illumination from an LPS lamp can oftentimes be nearly impossible. These lamps contain sodium, neon and argon gases and ignition and operations the same as with other HID lamps. Just as with MV and HPS lamps, LPS lamps are slow to warm up and cannot be quickly shit off and restarted. Their extremely poor color rendering drastically limits their practical use, and most applications see them utilized as street or parking lot illumination.


Metal halide lamps fall into a practical middle ground among HID lamps. They provide very good efficiency, around 115 lumens per watt, produce high intensity light output, and the quality of the light produced is much better than other forms of HID lamps. Metal halide lamps contain mercury vapor, and “metal halides”, more commonly known as salts, such as sodium-iodide. They operate similarly to other HID lamps, but have a shorter warmup period, and in newer and more advanced MH systems a fast restrike is possible, allowing the lamps to recover quickly from shut down without the long cooling off and warm up period common to other HID lamps. The light produced by MH lamps is much whiter, bordering on bluish, and is much more effective in correctly reproducing colors and detail contrasts. Metal halide is by far the most practical form of HID lighting for general illumination and can be commonly seen illuminating stadiums, warehouses, factories and other locations where large areas must be illuminated and good color quality required.



Of all the drawbacks to HID lighting, the mercury they contain is probably the most significant. HID lamps require proper disposal procedures when they reach the end of their useful life, and larger fixtures can pose a contamination problem in more confined areas should the lamp shatter or break. Despite this and the various shortcomings of HID lighting, it remains one of the overall most effective forms of lighting available.





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