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What are Electronic Ballasts?

10/8/2013 4:26:40 PM | by Anonymous

Electronic Ballasts

Lamps used in a normal house rarely require much energy. However, when an entire warehouse or factory store uses lamps, they can drive the operating costs to increase at a significant rate. To reduce the amount of power used by the lamp while ensuring it still gets enough energy to light up. Electronic ballast is then used with fluorescent and high intensity discharge lamps and they work through solid-state circuitry.


Electronic ballast is a device that helps in the controlling of the starting voltage as well as the operating currents of lighting devices build on the principle of electrical gas discharge. This refers to the part of the circuit that limits the flow of current through the lighting device. This may cause the variation from being a single resistor to being a bigger, complex device. In some fluorescent lighting systems like dimmers, the electronic ballasts are also responsible for controlling the flow of electrical energy to heat the lamp electrons.


A lamp requires energy to light up however the energy it draws in is generally more than it really needs. An electronic ballast is connected to the lamp to allow them to get closer to the necessary amount of energy rather than the excess amount it takes in. Every one of the electronic ballast is different yet it all works by adding an electrical load to the lamp. It then includes a negative resistance and resistor to balance the energy. An electronic ballast will increase lamp life and lower operating costs.


An electronic ballasts functions by using specific solid state circuit designs. In the solid-state design, the circuit is made from only solid pieces. The electrons would usually rush into the lamp without hindrance. However, they are now stopped or slowed by the pieces of electronic ballasts. Besides decreasing the overall amount of electrons, the ballasts also ensure the lamp receives enough power to start and operate. On top of that, it also keeps the energy stable. This means that a consistent amount of power will go into the lamp rather than increasing or decreasing as it would without the electronic ballasts.


Fluorescent lamps are one of the types of lamp that utilizes the electronic ballasts. This is due to the fact that fluorescent lamps use a low-pressure stream of energy and that the ballasts are able to produce a stronger light source which makes the lamp work better overall. Another benefit of using electronic ballast with a fluorescent lamp is that it helps to balance the energy going into the lamp. Fluorescent lamps are highly sensitive to any energy change. This can result in flickering to occur. Electronic ballasts can help to stop flickering so that the lamp will remain constant.


The other lamp that uses electronic ballast is a high intensity definition lamp. These lamps are of high pressure so the ballasts are usually unable to make the light source more efficient. While the light will not improve, the ballast is able to increase the durability of the HID lamp. HID lamps lose its lighting potential over the course of their life. This means that the ballast is able to decrease their losses.


The advantages of using electronic ballasts are that they provide greater efficiency. This is because electronic ballasts do not generate as much internal heat and thus reduces losses within the ballast itself. Additionally, the high frequency operations of the lamps help to reduce the loss in straight tube fluorescent lamps. It also enhances better control and design flexibilities.


The electronic components allow for the light output/ wattage consumption to be fine tuned for specific needs when using the lamps. Low light output ballast with a low ballast factors are also available for reduced energy consumption where less illumination is sufficient. High light output ballasts with a high power factor are available to reduce the number of lamps required to provide adequate illumination. Selector ballasts are also made available that have an adjustable ballast factor to operate lamps at three levels of light output. Electronic ballasts also provide flicker free dimming for fluorescent lamps. The electronic ballasts also have the ability to drive more lamps. The single ballast can drive up to 4 lamps. It eliminates the need for tandem wiring. Additionally, it reduces ballast cost due to the need for fewer total numbers of ballasts.

 

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