Apr 4, 2016 - Building
When lighting designers describe the lighting effect produced by their products, they use terms like warm, soft, cozy, neutral, or even accentuated. The right lighting can be provided for virtually any atmosphere since sophisticated lighting systems can create every conceivable mood. With the coming of LED technology, however, traditional methods were cast aside. “After it was consciously recognized that LEDs are perceived as spot lighting sources, it has since emerged that this factor appears as a disturbance in some lighting applications. Instead, lighting with a uniform radiation, without any recognizable LED points, is desired,” explains Marcel Nierhoff, program manager for lighting integration at the electronics distributor Future Electronics. However, in order for LED lighting to radiate just as warmly and uniformly as related lighting systems that use filament bulbs or fluorescent tubes, optical diffuser technologies, such as coated foils, are required. “Remote phosphor profiles offer a different approach,” says Marcel Nierhoff.
Phosphor is normally applied to blue LEDs in order to produce white light from the additive mixture of yellow phosphor with blue LEDs. The US manufacturer Intematix has been creating a sensation for some time now with a new innovation. “Intematix is a trailblazer in processes in which the phosphor is not applied directly to the LED. The desired effects are achieved instead by means of a ‘remote’ phosphor profile, that is, applied at a distance from the LED,” explains Marcel Nierhoff. This has clear benefits. “Due to the spatial separation of the LED and the phosphor, the generation of white light is more efficient than with a conventional white LED. Losses which occur through the use of a diffuser are also eliminated. The absolute uniformity of the light source shouldn’t be forgotten either,” explains lighting specialist Nierhoff.
However, there was a small snag in the solution: although lighting manufacturers could purchase the required Intematix products via the electronics distributor, which has several thousand employees worldwide, there were no LED modules on the market with royal blue LEDs which fitted the linear phosphor profiles. However, none of the modules with royal blue LEDS on the market could be used with the linear remote phosphor profiles. Manufacturing the required components on their own was not an option for their customers. In response to considerable feedback, Future Electronics undertook the initiative themselves. “We developed the LED modules ourselves so that we could offer our customers the right products,” says Nierhoff. With its many years of experience in the field of integrated LED solutions, the manufacturer, headquartered in Montreal, Canada, was able to respond more specifically to customer requirements.
The lighting experts in Future Lighting Solutions work in facilities scattered around the world. It took them half a year to develop the components and production processes. Their work resulted in aluminum profiles with fitted LED modules in standard 560 and 1,160 millimeter lengths, which are perfectly matched to the linear profiles from Intematix. The profiles simply slide over the LED modules – the complete luminaire is then ready. Because Intematix uses different phosphor mixtures for its linear profiles, lighting designers can choose between different CCT (correlated color temperature) and CRI (color rendering index) values.
To ensure a high quality wiring design that was also convenient for customers, Marcel Nierhoff turned to WAGO. “We were pleased to be the first people they contacted. Working together, we quickly found the right solution,” says Patrick Schirrmacher, Market Manager for PCB Applications & Lighting at WAGO. The Minden-based company has been offering PCB terminal blocks, specifically designed for LED boards, since 2011. The terminal blocks are both extremely flat and they can be soldered using the reflow process. As surface-mount devices (SMD) they are designed exclusively for surface mounting on PCBs. The 2060 Series SMD Terminal Blocks are equipped with push-in CAGE CLAMP® connection technology.
They are suitable for solid and fine-stranded conductors; rigid, solid conductors can be connected simply by pushing them in. The integrated push-button allows the clamping unit to be opened for connecting or removing all types of conductors. Patrick Schirrmacher describes the most important features, “What makes modules so successful is the fact that they combine several features: side-by-side assembly without the loss of any poles, the integrated push-button for intuitive connection and removal of conductors, and especially the compact design.”
WAGO’s entire SMD range comprises 1-, 2- and 3-pole terminal blocks in three sizes (2059, 2060 and 2061 Series) for conductor cross sections from 0.14 to 1.5 mm2. High-voltage variants of the 2060 Series are also available. Additional board-to-board links for the 2060 Series can be used to fit several boards together. Another special feature: the terminal blocks are beveled at the input. “Cameras for quality control can thus better view and check the conductor entry from above,” explains Schirrmacher.
New Generation, New Features
Future Electronics relies on two-pole terminal blocks from the 2060 Series with an installation height of just 4.5 millimeters for the production of their linear LED modules. “By using WAGO products, our customers are assured that the wiring is flexibly designed and meets demanding requirements,” says Nierhoff. The most recently optimized design of the 2060 Series is used for series production of modules. Due to their pure white color and particularly robust design, the new version of the terminal blocks is highly suited for manual and automated wiring.
In addition to the linear remote phosphor modules, Future Electronics also offers other LED modules that it has developed in-house. The so-called “SimpleLED” range was only recently upgraded and can be wired conveniently thanks to the WAGO’s SMD terminal blocks. Three Zhaga-compliant LED models, with lengths of 280, 560 and 1,120 millimeters, are included in the portfolio, and a flexible modular device for street and industrial lighting is also included. The offering also includes high-voltage modules that can be connected directly to the AC mains. “In certain areas, we see a need for products, in which the driver can be eliminated and which have the electronics on board,” Nierhoff explains.
With this project, Future Electronics has once again demonstrated their expertise in the field of lighting. “The intelligent combination of technologies to form complete lighting solutions provides customers with a rapid entry into the field of LED lighting. In the future, we will expand this approach,” concludes Marcel Nierhoff. “An obvious idea is the ability to control and regulate the LED lights to increase their efficiency.” An area in which WAGO has a lot of expertise.
TEXT DIRK SCHÄFER | ALPHADIALOG
PHOTO BERND HERGERT | vor-ort-foto.de