LEDs are currently top choice for lighting system upgrades in rugged facilities. As a lighting technology that is setting the standard for the sector, when it comes to performance and illuminative output, it is expected its position will be challenged by engineers and lighting manufacturers.
In the past few years, upgrades to induction lighting have made it more viable for applications that require persistent illumination. Like LEDs, the lamps come with an impressive lifespan of 50,000 – 100,000 hours. Moreover, it can retain lumen output at 70 percent after 60,000 hours.
No Electrodes, No Problem
Induction lighting fixtures utilize gas (like a fluorescent unit) inside the bulb for illumination. The main difference between the two lighting technologies is the use of electrodes. Traditionally, fluorescent luminaries rely on electrodes to kick start current inside the lamp. Continuous striking of the arc contributes to wear and tear over time.
By comparison, induction lights do not use electrodes to initiate a current during startup. Instead, the units leverage a generator (high frequency) and a power coupler. A radio frequency magnetic field is generated, which is used to activate the internal components of the fixture.
Comparing Light Output
Like LEDs, induction lamps can be toggled instantly without flickering. Moreover, the units provide accurate CRI ratings, at a range of 80+. This allows the fixtures to be used for detailed tasks and paint spray booths (Class I, Division 1 or 2 required).
Comparing energy efficiency rates, induction lights offer roughly 90 lumens-per-watt during illumination. LEDs perform slightly higher than this at a rate of 120 lumens-per-watt, when in use.
To conclude, LEDs clearly outperform induction lamps – but not by a wide margin. However, the nascent state of LED technology suggests there is plenty of room for improvements and upgrades. The gap between the performance of LEDs and incandescent lights or metal halide fixtures is considerably larger.