DIY LED Lighting via Luxeon Stars
I thought I'd move over from lighting to here since it is a DIY project,...but then again, it is a lighting issue :D
This is a continuation of this thread:
This LED project has 2 parts:
1) To look at long term viability of LED lighting
2) Comparative growth from LED lighting vs PC lighting
Part 1 will be 24x1watt Luxeons over a 10g. There will be a combonation of high and low light plants. This study will go on for approx 6+ months assuming good plant growth.
Part 2 will be a side by side comparison of 7x1watt Luxeons vs 1x7watt PC (Azoo palm light). The plants will be grown in the same environment using small "critter" cages with weekly water changes of nutrient enriched water. CO2 via Excel and water circulation via an airstone. The plants to be grown are Hemianthus micranthemoides, Glossostigma elatinoides, and E. acicularis. There will be no trimming of the plants. If the plants grow emersed, then I'll let them keep growing.
Photo documentation of both will be posted here. The plan is ~ every 2 weeks.
This project is made possible through a generous Luxeons star donation from:
Today is a good day :) Fedex had a delivery!!!
a close up
Donation?? Now you're talking, who did you have to kidnap to get those? :wink:
Keep us updated, you've surpassed the only hurdle I can think of, that is the price of the LEDs.
I wrote up a considerably more lengthy proposal and submitted it. After going through a few channels, it was approved etc. Of course Lumileds's will be following this thread quietly ;)
Right now this is an expensive alternative, but if I my project has very favorable results, then perhaps other light companies (ie JBJ etc) might look at this and you might see some fashion of them on the market . When this happens, bulk orders will drive things down$.
...or so the plan goes.
I'm sure, not to mention the longevity of LEDs, dimming possibilities, power consumption and combination of LEDs to acchieve the desired overall look. I think if you consider what we spend each year in lighting the higher costs are not that bad, paying for something that works is no problem, it's paying for it to try it out that is hard :(
Keep us updated!
Yeah, they should most likely be dimmable, which is a deffinate bonus over common flourescent setups. If these have any kind of longevity as most LEDs, then thats also a plus. I can also see much easier mounting options, less space taken up in the hood, as well as a safer, lower voltage system. These would also give great options for mounting to give more light in one area, and less in another, etc...
... When night falls we could use the same "smart" dimmer to moon light our tanks... :roll: Can't wait until these leds are available at WallMart :wink:
Looks like my drivers will arrive next week along with the rest of the Luxeons. I already got a monster heatsink. It is overkill, but I got a good deal on it :)
Got some scrap aluminum and mounted a single star on it and am powering it with batteries. Running at 0.29amps and WOW..it is bright. Can't wait to take it home to compare the single 1watt star to the 7watt PC
Hurried home and got a first comparison photo. ..it is NOT a fair comparison, jsut a comparison ;)
Both photos were taken with the same camera conditions. In real life, the light is BRIGHTER than the photos show. I just didn't want to adjust things more than keeping things static.
The top picture is a 7watt Azoo palm light.
The bottom picture is a SINGLE 1watt luxeon star.
The picture is a section of my baby shrimp grow out tank.
Keep in mind also, that equal light intensity (to the eye) isn't the same as equal PAR. An experiment later will tackle that issue.
I work for a program at a University that gives me excellent access to some very nice shop facilities (I am the computer lab administrator). I have been chomping at the bit to make some DIY "nano" aquaria for home and office to learn the tools in the shop, and use the new design and CAD tools to plan with.
I am very much looking forward to your test results. These sound extremely promising for making some beautiful and highly efficient "nano" aquaria. Cannot wait to get my hands on some to try out! :-)
Cool photos gomer, I can't believe how much just the 1 luxeon star is lighting up that aquarium. How many stars do you guestimate it will take to match the intensity of the 7 watt azoo?
That is what I will soon find out. My drivers should be here next week, so I'll know shortly after that. I'll have 7 1watters to directly compare (from both an intensity and a PAR standpoint). Just have to wait :(
had a little time to play in the machine shop today. wired it temp and ran it with a regulated power supply. ..Sorry..didn't have the camera with me..but it sure was nice and bright! I'll work on the 24 LED section later in the week.
Should have my drivers the beginning of next week, and then I'll be able to post comparison pictures of LED vs PC
view of the heatsink...an overkill, but I got a deal on it. ...hmm...I can switch out to 3watt luxeons on this :D
Nice to see the progress you've made.
Are you going to use Silicon Heatsink Compound on those luxeons. Will help with heat conduction.
I will be using some arctic silver III....CPU thermal heatsink compound :D
..had some extra.
I have not worked with LED's for a while, and they seem to be connected in series, why connect them in series... 1 blown LEd would mean all of them turn off or would the LED bypass itself?
In this case, they are supposed to be in series. The power will be by a constant current source designed for these LEDs
The 7 will be driven by the 350ma driver and the 24 by two 700ma drivers
Another comparison...still not a fair one ;)
The top picture is a 7watt Azoo Palm light 7100K
The bottom is 7x 1watt luxeon stars that are ONLY driven at 115ma, NOT their rated value (and value that I will drive at when I get the drivers) of 350 ma.
hope this is starting to shed light on the issue ;)
WOOHOO!!! Drivers and last 10 LEDs came in today :)
time for an update picture
Some food for thought. Fluorescent lights are not on 100% of the time. They flicker at a high rate. this means that if you had an LED and a flourescent light putting out the same visible amount of light, the LED is really putting out more! How much more is dependent on how long the Fluorescent light is OFF for between pulses. Plants see # of photons at a given wave length, NOT the apparent intensity.
Top picture is the 7100k Azoo palm light.
Bottom picture is 7x 1watt Luxeon stars driven at 350ma.
All camera conditions are the same for both pictures
I m a sucker for new fancy high tech stuff so the dawn / dusk capabilites of your setup do appeal to me.
Could one of you post just bullet style what LED's strengths are supposed to be over Power compacts?
Lower PG&E bills? Less heat?
The follwoing is for LUXEONS..not normal LEDs
+high can get very high light density
+last ~50,000 hours (10-15 years+)
+more effectively remove heat
+can use as "spot lights" with a lense
+can do dimming/dusk/dawn
+all sorts of colors if you want to add a little more of a given color
+appears to have a good photosythetic responce overlap
-needs a heatsink
-must DIY some part of it
maybe more +/- ...?
Not sure about wall plug efficiency, but 7watts of luxeons light the tank more than a 7watt PC. Not sure about plant growth, but I am working on that.
I have a question for the people using these LUXEONS. I am planning on getting the Nova II for my tank. The thing I am worried about is that the MH bulb will look to yellow. Would the 5 watt blue LUXEONS be bright enough to balance the color out if installed in the fixture?
I am not familiar with the Nova. not sure if the luxeon would work unless you got something like 20-30° optics.
how about adding a small PC instead?
a 10-12,000K should help there perhaps?
Yeah the fixture is only 6" long, so I don't think there is room for PC's. Maybe if I add the luxeon's pointing at the bulb in the reflector. I'll have to try things out.
7watt vs 7watt begins. Here is the start...Day 0
Plants in there:
Dwarf Hair Grass
narrow leaf pearl weed (?)
Pear weed (HM)
Interesting, looking forward to future posts :D
A new update
For comparison pics, all camera settings were the same. The lights are really brighter than represented, but that doesn't matter for this post.
I'll fix it tonight.
6 days on the 7v7 comparison
Looks like slightly better growth under the LEDs?
I think it is still early to call since the plants weren't 100% identical between containers. ..i just like to document as much as I can :)
sorry, is me again...
hehe... what's about the temperature testing? ...heheee
anyway, good job. thank you very much!
i have some ideas already.
1. your Luxeon Star should be 5500k but the PC is 7100k. i am afraid PC's one should be close to blue while the Luxeon Star close to yellow. can u find PC which is more close to 5500k?? so that, we can be more easy to identify the color rendering result? (sorry to put it so hard.)
2. is your PC absolutely new? if not, the difference may show from the result.
ps. it is better if u can take pics from the eye-level next time. ^^
I did test it once, but it was about 1.5hr after the lights went out. those temps were the same. However, the PC tank did have a bout 25% more water evaporation than the LED light setup
I wont be getting a new bulb to check color rendering. If someone wants to donate a 5500k 7watt PC then I will ;) The LED actually looks rather white with little hint of yellow, green or blue. These are the WO leds for those following Luxeon Binning. I do have some others with a greenish tint. These are mixed 33/66 to some WO's on the big LED setup.
The PC isn;t absolutely new. It is a few months old. This however shouldn't be a big issue. New PCs are brightest when new but rapidly drop ..then they slowly drop intensity over time. I am testing the PC while it is still reasonably young which is probably more representative of a PC than a brand new one (considering the length of this study).
I'll do eye level next time. ..just trying to avoid flash glare.
THX for ur helping~~
it sounds that Luexon + heatsink really release less heat than PC.
why u do open flash to take pics?
it should be better if u dun turn on "flash" and open wider the aperture from ur camera.
THANK YOU VERY MUCHHHHH!!
look forward for more comming result!
ps. hehe...what do u mean of "WO"?
Hey, just thought you might be interested in this article:
Towards the end of the page there is a nano-reef that Tullio Dell Aquilla setup using LEDs. Looks very bright for 13W of light. Looks like he is also combining different LEDs to get the desired overall look.
Keep us updated
Another update. Thought this would be a better way of showing the tanks. White balance is now the same between the pictures. No flash. The PC has a blue cast. The LEDs seem very neutral in color..perhaps a slight yellow in comparison.
Dwarf hair grass: LED is starting to show runners. PC nothing
Rotala indica: Both are close, but the LED is slightly ahead(although they both appear stunted)
Glosso: too close to tell
2 leaf pearl grass: LED clearly ahead
pearl grass: LED clearly ahead. Horizontal growth seen with the LED only
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