LED Flood Lights
LED flood lights are born to replace traditional flood lights with halogen, HID, metal halide or other energy saving light sources. After decades of technological improvements, LED light sources are now far better with regards to energy saving, life span, start-up time, stability, safety, environmental issues and other areas compared to traditional lamps; therefore LED flood lighting has become the undisputed alternative to traditional lighting.
The common power outputs for LED flood lights are 10W, 30W, 50W, 100W, 150W, 200W, with the maximum they can reach being 1000W, which may be 2-3 times the power of ordinary floodlights. As with traditional flood lights, white LED floodlights have a wide range of applications; they can be used for almost all lighting of large outdoor areas and up to very high levels, large span interior spaces inside buildings, including squares, building exteriors, parks, bus stations, airports, on sculptures and other artworks, lawns, courtyards, workshops and factories, markets, on streets, playgrounds, tennis courts, golf courses, basketball courts, football fields, billboards, residential areas, in fact they may be used almost everywhere.
Apart from white light, there are also colored LED light source RGB LED flood lights which are mainly used on the surfaces of buildings or for decorative lighting of garden plants.
The lighting angle of LED floodlights can be adjusted through the angle of the optics, the smallest beam angle can be controlled to within 5°, therefore they can also be used for long-distance (or vertical) condensed lighting. Most LED floodlights have a larger angle of light so the beam can be spread evenly in all directions; some of the LED flood lights will use diffusion materials on the lens, therefore light will be emitted evenly on to the surface to be illuminated, effectively eliminating the formation of dark areas on uneven surfaces. Especially indoors, the uniformity of lighting of the work surface is a very important indicator of the quality of the lighting and the use of LED flood lights can achieve this very well.
Usually LED flood lighting has symmetrical light distribution, so its light often shows as a symmetrical regular polygon or a circular shape. Because of the wide beam range of flood lights, the effects of floodlighting are very easy to control, and there are many auxiliary uses, such as if the floodlight is placed close to the surface of an object, it will produce bright light on its surface.
Three Factors That Determine the Quality of LED Flood Lights
Similarly to other LED lamps, the key factors affect the quality of LED flood lights include optical, thermal and electrical components of the light.
LED light source (package) in a high power flood light usually working under higher current rather than those in a 5W LED light bulb, therefore they need to be of high heat resistance and absolutely impeccable.
Besides heat dissipation, the structural design of lamp body also determines how well the light from LED chip can be reflected and how safe the driver will be (ingress protection and heatstrike protection is critical to a LED driver). The heat dissipation structure design therefore directly affects the result of the optical structure as well as the performance of LED power supply.
High quality LED power supply release less heat and more stable current outputs to LED chips, and it prevents the whole system from lightning surge and vlotage waves. Thus these three aspects are mutually connected. The components of the common LED floodlights usually include tempered glass, reflectors, an LED light source and LED power source along with a die-cast aluminum shell. LED floodlights used for outdoor purposes should also have a good waterproof design and use strong reliable materials.
Structural Design and Usage Features of LED Flood Lights
LED flood light lamp bodies should be made from a high-quality aluminum alloy to achieve better mechanical strength as well as improved sealing and corrosion resistance. The aluminum alloy should be made by forging, or extrusion cutting, to form the correct shape, and the number of fin-like structures should be maximised to increase the area for heat exchange with the air, thus achieving better heat dissipation.
Usually the surface needs to go through oxidation, chemical spraying and other surface treatments to achieve better protection for outdoor environments; in addition, it is necessary to ensure the structure is robust and waterproof, to ensure the reliability of usage of the lamp outdoors as well as close to water. The light surface is usually tempered glass, sealed with a silicone seal, with a protection level of at least IP65, so that it can meet the requirements of urban lighting engineering, commercial sites, airports, subways, overpasses, landmark buildings, exterior wall and various other diverse uses.
The connection design of the wires of LED driver is another difficult part for most outdoor lights as it usually go through the lamp body from inside to outside and need to be waterproofing and dustproofing at the same time, especially when there are more than two modules in a modular LED flood light (often more than 6).
Traditionally, the size of a floodlight is usually determined by the size of the light source liner and the reflector cup. The LED floodlight size is generally determined by its power, that is, by the size of the lamp unit because of the greater the power, the greater the size of the lamp unit needed.
LED flood lights are generally installed on a wall or in the ground. First drill into the wall or the ground, install expansion screw fixings, then install the LED floodlights and lock with screws. The distance between floodlights is according to the customer’s requirements. LED flood lights must have accurate angle adjustment in order to meet the large lighting angle requirements whilst maintaining sufficient stability. Compared with traditional light sources, LED flood lights do not need additional filtering devices, the lighting system is simple, low cost and easy to install. LED floodlights have the advantages of high luminous efficiency, low power consumption, long life, high safety and reliability, and are environmentally friendly. They have become the mainstream modern outdoor lighting fixtures.
Concentrated LED flood lights generally use a different internal small angle (the smallest can be 3°) reflector cup design, with high light reflectivity, this creates a condenser effect and although the lit area is small it will shine for long distances. LED flood lights, used as indoor and outdoor lighting devices for specific areas, generally require relatively strong light and usually use a high-power LED as the light source, adding a lens to achieve the purpose of condensing the light. Because of the requirements of modern architectural lighting, the miniaturization of floodlights is a developing trend with flood lights; lighting designers are pursuing high-quality lighting effects with small sized or even hidden lamps, to achieve the design concept of ‘see the light but not the lamp’; the use of SSL as a light source for LED flood lights is undoubtedly a good fit for these requirements.
Make Sure You Get Right LEDs
Earlier versions, before 2012, of LED flood lights usually chose a COB integrated light source as the main package type, because the compact integrated light source structure was more conducive to light distribution. With the emergence of medium-power and high-power Surface Mounted Devices (SMD), and the corresponding rapid development of SMD lens technology since 2012, SMD LEDs have gradually become the mainstream solution for LED lighting.
The LED chips are the cores of LED light sources and they directly affect the overall reliability of LED floodlights. Usually, CREE, Puri, Samsung, Wafer, Nichia and other brands are chosen as the main chip suppliers. The light can be monochrome but you can also use either external or internal controls to achieve RGB full-color changes, color flickering and other effects. RGB floodlights are made by using three different colors, red, green and blue, LEDs in a lamp, and then by using an RGB drive power, controlling the three different colors of LED, respectively, thus making the LED change color in accordance with pre-programmed sequences to achieve the desired decorative effects.
You Need a Good Driver for LED Flood Light
As LED flood lights are usually used outdoors, the stability of power supplies of outdoor lighting is often lower than those of indoor commercial or private individuals’ lighting circuits. They will often face power surges, lightning, voltage fluctuations, etc., and therefore the selection of the type of power units for LED floodlights is critical. We strongly recommend the use of an isolated, waterproof power unit, because it has better abnormal shock resistance in the circuitry. Also with intelligent protection, it will automatically turn off the current in any unusual circumstances, and when the situation is over, it will restore itself to normal operation; this can effectively extend the lifespan of the lamp.
There are many non-isolated or AC power supplies on the market today, compared to isolated power supplies, these power supplies only cost ten percent of the former, but the resistance to current and voltage fluctuations is very poor, causing major issues with safety. As these low-cost power units often used low-current, high-voltage solutions, long-term usage will decrease the insulation properties of the device, or will lead to power leakage due to design defects and will create a safety threat to the owner and the surrounding population.
Comparing LED flood light to traditional High Intensity Discharge (HID) lamps, some of the key distinguishing features are: faster start-up time, no need to warm-up before starting, do not need to cool down after turning off and can be immediately re-lit. This is a significant feature on LED induction floodlights, and traditional floodlights such as high pressure sodium lamps and metal halide induction lamps cannot do this. LED floodlights, fitted with a people sensing function, can automatically turn on when people are present and then will automatically shut down when the people leave; this stops energy waste, extends the service life and combines the functions of energy-saving, convenience and environmental friendliness in one. They are suitable to use in corridors, passageways, warehouses, garages, basements, toilets and other places where automatic lighting is appropriate, and truly reflect intelligent buildings and the modernization of property management.
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