Light Emitting Diodes, abbrev. LED’s, are up-and-coming and will eventually replace both classic light bulbs and CCFL’s in various applications. TamsPalm covered a LED-powered Jornada a few months ago – meanwhile, LED’s have gone main-stream; with the latest ipaq’s having LED backlighted screens.

National Semiconductor has released a paper that looks at driving high-power LED’s a few days ago – while it does contain a nasty bit of advertising, parts of it make an excellent read(especially for all those who wish to create a LED-powered IIIc :-) ):
http://www.national.com/appinfo/power/files/national_power_designer116.pdf

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3 Responses to “Driving LED’s efficiently”

  1. LED lights are definately the way of the future. Regular bulbs are going to be banned in 20 or so years from now because the energy consumption of LED lights is mo much lower

  2. Yeah, I love LED’s. They’re basically the future of lighting. Nearly ideal as a light source in terms of effeciency and lifespan.

    However, I’m not really sold on some of the super high-power LED’s. The more they crank out of some of these the more heat you generate and also the lifespan can be reduced. A lot of manufacturers sell their LED’s at power levels which are above the optimum for them.

    It’s much like how CPU makers run their chips almost “overclocked” near the point of failure. This is why you see led’s degrade. They can theoretically last just about forever but often they’re run at a level which degrades them.

    I’ve found the best effeciency is using multiple leds running at BELOW their maximum brightness as opposed to a single high intensity LED. Less energy loss to heat and better for the lifespan.

    But I guess it’s a cost issue in the end.

  3. Hi,
    to be honest – I know quite a few circuit designers who state just the same – they also prefer to have two LED’s running at b/2 to one running at b….efficiency and especially longetivity issues…

    Best regards
    Tam Hanna

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