When it comes to understanding LED lights, it can seem overwhelming to choose and work out whether they will work for your design project. We’ve put together this handy understanding LED lights guide to make it easier for you to make the decision.
LED stands for light emitting diode and they can be incorporated in bulbs and fixtures for general lighting applications. Due to the small size of LED’s, they can be used in many unique ways for different design opportunities. This is why they are a very popular light source today as they can be used for a much wider breadth of applications compared to traditional lighting technologies. To help understand LED lights and how they work, it is good to know how they came about and also how they differ from the more traditional light sources such as incandescent bulbs.
History of LED lights
You may be surprised to find that LED’s were not created in the 21st century and were in fact first produced in 1962. However, before the first date of production, a lot of work and research went into LED’s that dated back to 1907. The first LED produced in 1962 was invented by 33-year-old Nick Holonyak Jr. who was a General Electric scientist. The first LED technology that was invented by Holonyak Jr. was used for circuit boards for computers and small electric equipment. These were very durable but had a pretty low lumen output. During the next few decades after 1962, LED’s were further advanced, with the development of red, yellow and blue LED colours. Also during this time, LED lights became extremely bright and energy efficient. In 2002, white LEDs were commercially available for residential use and were sold for approximately £80 – £100 each. Nowadays, LED lights are used on a large scale to illuminate workplaces, homes, gardens and much more.
How do LED lights differ from other light sources?
There are many ways that LED lights differ from incandescent bulbs. One way LED lights differ are that LED lights are a directional light source, meaning they only emit light in one specific direction compared to other light sources that emit light and heat in every direction. This is why LED lights are more energy efficient for a number of different applications. Another way LED lights differ from incandescent bulbs is that LED’s use an electrical current that passes through a diode to produce light. This is different to incandescent bulbs that produce light by using electricity to heat a metal filament until it becomes hot which creates the “white” light. This means incandescent light bulbs release 90% of their energy as heat compared to LED’s that produce no heat at all. A final difference between LED lights and incandescent light bulbs is that LED lights do not ‘burn out’ like incandescent bulbs. Instead the brightness of the LED dims slowly over time which is called ‘lumen depreciation’. LED’s usually need replacing when the light output decreases by around 30%. You can read more about how LED lights work in our dedicated blog.
At William Sugg, we offer a range of LED solutions to apply the latest LED lighting technology to enhance a distinctive landmark or place. Our LED light engines are suitable for all of our existing and current lanterns to help meet today’s modern lighting standards.