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Discussion Starter #1
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:
http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=695

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:

www.lumileds.com
 

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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.

Giancarlo Podio
 

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Discussion Starter #5
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.
 

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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!
Giancarlo Podio
 

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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...
 

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Daemonfly said:
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...
The benefits are unbelievable and I really don't see that many cons. I assume the heat being produced wouldn't heat up the tank so much during the day. I also like the fact of the LED's being dimmable. Could create a dusk till dawn effect with a controller and not have to have a 4 bulb setup to create such an effect. Of course the life expectancy and possibilities of the smallest lighting fixtures around is also a bonus. I can't wait to see how this experiment turns out, keep us posted with plenty of updates Gomer.

Matt
 

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... 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:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
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
 

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Discussion Starter #11
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.
 

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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! :)

-Jason
 

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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?

Matt
 

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Discussion Starter #15
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
 

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Nice to see the progress you've made.

Are you going to use Silicon Heatsink Compound on those luxeons. Will help with heat conduction.
 

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Gomer,

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?
 
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