The use of T5 fluorescent technology has become the designer’s choice when it comes to lighting the general office where energy efficiency, light control and aesthetic are the priory needs.
With the introduction of the new Building Code Regulations limiting the limiting power density for different applications.
Osram Australia’s T5 fluorescent lamp technology more than meets these new requirements.
Since its 1995 introduction more than 5 million T5 lamps and ballasts have been sold and installed in Australia alone.
T5 fluorescent lamps can only operate on electronic control gear. The light output and the life of the lamp were designed from the beginning to an optimum of up to 104 lm/W. The maximum luminous flux of the T5 lamps is at 35oC compared to 25oC for T8 lamps.
This increase in temperature allows freedom and flexibility for the luminaire designer to develop smaller, streamline and aesthetically pleasing light fittings for many applications.
The T5 lamp needs to have the luminaire designed for the lamp; it is not a replacement for the T8 lamp as the T5 lamp is 50mm shorter.
When developing the T5 luminaire, the designer has many parameters to help get the optimum performance from the lamp and the electronic ballast. For every T5 fluorescent lamp, manufacturers publish data on the performance of the lamp under various operating temperatures allowing the luminaire to optimise the performance of the lamp for the application chosen.
This temperature of the lamp is measured at the cold spot of the lamp (the point where mercury condensates in the discharge tube at the stamped end of the lamp).
This value is measured at the socket of the stamped side, approximately in distance 2mm of the glass. For optimum performance, this cold spot temperature should remain between 45oC and 55oC for the designed application.
Also more important in the luminaire design; is to ensure that the electronic ballast case temperature (tc point) is not exceeded. This is measured during the testing of the luminaire under the guidelines of the Australian Standard AS/NZS60598.2.1.
If the temperature of the tc point of the electronic ballast is exceeded by 10oC a 50% reduction in service life can be expected. However, when the temperature at the tc point is permanently 10oC or below the maximum, the expected service life of the unit will be approximately doubled.
The new technology T5 ECG’s versions which use of microprocessors and components are rated at 100,000 hours.
Therefore, designing the luminaire to optimise the performance and operating the
1/3 ECG at 10oC below the maximum tc temperature could result in an extension of service life up to 200,000 hours.
T5 fluorescent technology is better than you think as long as the luminaire is designed to optimise the performance of the lamp and electronic control gear.