Metal Halide

400 Watt Metal Halide Lose 50% Light Output At About 50% Of The Life Of The Bulb...

How long a lamp lasts and how long it's good for are two totally different things. Most lamp manufacturers rate their 400WMH lamps between 16,000 and 20,000 hours.
However as you can see from the chart below, the lamps are only producing around 50% of there intended light after only 10,000 hours. (IN FACT...If you look closely, the lighting output begins to decline after you turn on the power to the new bulb.)
So what does that give you? Well, you get a fixture that gives you the equivalent of 200 watts of light for the cost of 400.....pretty sweet deal isn't it? If you think so, you may want to look at the induction line below.

estimated lumen maintenance-resized-600 induction-comparison-chart (1)

1000 Watt Metal Halide Lose 50% Even Faster...

Sadly, it doesn't get any better with a larger fact its much worse.
1000WMH lamps are rated for a life of around 11,000 hours. So in keeping in the characteristics of metal halide they would produce the light output of a 400 WMH lamp in roughly 5,000 to 6,000 hours of use. This means that you are only getting 50% of the output from your 1000WMH, but you are still burning 1058 watts. You are getting 1/2 the light for 100% of the cost of operating the fixture. Is that a good deal? If you re lamped your facility it would take just over a year for you to be down to the light levels of a 400WMH lamp. The bad part is lamps and ballasts don't care if your not getting full light output, they will spin the meter just as fast on day 500 as they did on day 1.
The only real loser is the business owner footing the bill for electricity.
Can't You Just Replace the Bulbs More Often? 

We have proposed upgraded lighting solutions to companies before and had them scoff at any numbers I have shown that consider payback in regards to maintenance savings.
Realistically with a metal halide that burns 12 hrs. per day you should be re lamping every 2 years, even if the lamp still works.
The reason being is that the lamp is only giving you 55%-60% of the light it's supposed to but your still paying for 100% of the light!
Let me put it this way. If our company came and installed 100 brand new lights at your business and within 2 years only 40 of them worked....would you feel ripped off?
Of course you would...and in reality the metal halide bulbs above your head IS ripping you's doing the same thing! It is only working at 50% of its original output, yet your paying the same utility costs.

Fluorescent Technology

How Fluorescent Lamps Work
A fluorescent lamp is a “gaseous discharge” light source. Light is produced by passing an electric arc between tungsten cathodes in a tube filled with a low pressure mercury vapor and other gases. The arc excites the mercury vapor which generates radiant energy, primarily in the ultraviolet range. This energy causes the phosphor coating on the inside of the tube to “fluoresce,” converting the ultraviolet into visible light. Fluorescent lamps have two electrical requirements. To start the lamp, a high voltage surge is needed to establish an arc in the mercury vapor. Once the lamp is started, the gas offers a decreasing amount of resistance, which means that current must be regulated to match this drop. Otherwise, the lamp would draw more and more power and rapidly burn itself out. This is why fluorescent lamps—and other discharge light sources—must be operated by a ballast, which provides the required starting voltage and then controls the subsequent flow of current to the lamp.

The Importance of Phosphor Coatings
Fluorescent lamps offer more color options than any other lamp type. This is because of sophisticated refinements in the composition of the phosphor coating on the inside of the tube. Early fluorescent lamps used a single halophosphor coating and could offer improved color quality only with an accompanying decrease in efficacy (LPW). It is now possible to add “rare earth” or “triphosphor” coatings that allow precise control over the generation of red, green and blue, the three primary colors of light. This has enabled the development of high LPW lamps in a variety of color temperatures that feature excellent color quality and provide vibrant and outstanding rendition of virtually all colors. Today’s fluorescent lamps employ more than twenty different phosphor formulations to offer designers and specifiers extensive control over the quality of light in any installation.

A Systems Approach
It is always important to bear in mind that fluorescent is a system involving both ballasts and lamps. A properly balanced fluorescent lamp/ballast system enhances luminous efficacy, improves color characteristics, extends lamp life and increases energy efficiency. We offer a complete line of lamp/ballast combinations that are specially designed to optimize overall system performance.

T8 Lamps Improve Efficiency
Another important advance in fluorescent technology is the development of the T8 lamp. Featuring a tube of only one inch in diameter— compared with one and a half inches for the traditional T12 lamps—these lamps dramatically improve system efficiency. A 28 -watt T8 lamp, for example, uses 24 percent less energy to provide the same light output as a 40- watt T12 lamp. T8 lamps employ special triphosphor coatings to achieve precise control over color temperature and CRI. The smaller diameter of the T8 tube means that less of these costly materials are needed. In addition, T8 lamps provide optimum system efficiency when used with electronic ballasts. This combination provides such dramatic savings in energy costs that billions of dollars are being spent each year to retrofit existing T12 installations with more efficient T8 technology.

T5 Lamps Extend Options
Fluorescent lamps are getting thinner. Although T8 lamps are still the choice for retrofitting most T12 installations and for new commercial construction, the new T5 lamps are inspiring the work of specifiers everywhere. The narrow ballasts allow fixture manufacturers to design T5 luminaires that are both small and stylish.

Compact Fluorescent Lamps Save Energy
The fastest growing application for fluorescent technology today is compact fluorescent lamps. These lamps feature a narrow tube (1/2 to 5/8 inches in diameter) that is doubled back on itself and terminated in a plastic base. Compact fluorescent lamps are small enough to replace incandescent lamps in diffuse source applications and therefore bring the increased efficiency of fluorescent technology to a much larger variety of fixtures. Compact fluorescent lamps, for example, feature an integral electronic ballast and a standard screw-in medium base. These innovative lamps can be used to directly replace incandescent lamps in many of the most common wattages. Other lamps are available in a variety of sizes, wattages and color temperatures for use with external magnetic or electronic ballasts.

Induction Lighting

Induction lighting is one of the best kept secrets in energy-efficient lighting. Simply stated, induction lighting is essentially a fluorescent light without electrodes or filaments, the items that frequently cause other bulbs to burn out quickly. Thus, many induction lighting units have an extremely long life of up to 100,000 hours. To put this in perspective, an induction lighting system lasting 100,000 hours will last more than 11 years in continuous 24/7 operation, and 25 years if operated 10 hours a day.
The technology, however, is far from new. Nikola Tesla demonstrated induction lighting in the late 1890s around the same time that his rival, Thomas Edison, was working to improve the incandescent light bulb. In the early 1990s, several major lighting manufacturers introduced induction lighting into the marketplace.

Despite its high initial cost, induction lighting has many superior characteristics, including the following:

  • Virtually maintenance-free operation
  • High efficacy—in many cases, 60+ or 70+ lumens per watt
  • Long life
  • Excellent color rendering index (CRI)—80+ and in some cases 90+
  • Choice of warm white to cool white (2,700–6,500 K) color temperature
  • Instant start and restrike operation
  • No flickering, strobing, or noise
  • Low-temperature operation
  • Dimmable capability with some units
  • High power factor: .90+
  • Long Lifespan

Experience with using induction lighting at the U.S. Department of Energy's Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad, New Mexico, has demonstrated the long life in actual usage. WIPP's first induction lighting system was installed in 1998, replacing high-pressure sodium (HPS) lights. More than 10 years later, all but three of the original 36 induction units are still operating after more than 88,000 hours of continuous, 24/7 operation. Additional systems were installed in 2002 and succeeding years, both indoors and outside, with excellent results.

Two of the top manufacturers of induction lighting systems have an average rated life of 100,000 hours, including the ballast. Check out the warranties before buying. Some manufacturers offer full five-year warranties on the entire induction lighting system. Others offer shorter warranties on some or all components.

Although they may last 100,000 hours, after 60,000 to 100,000 hours of operation the initial lumen output of many of the induction lighting systems drops to 70%—the point where relamping is often recommended.

Applications with High Potential for Induction Lighting
In hard-to-reach locations that make maintenance costs high, such as street lighting and tunnels, or in high ceilings where there is continuous operation, such as hotel rotundas
Cold environments, such as supermarket walk-in coolers and freezers
Where high-quality lighting is required or highly desirable
Where reliability is highly valued
Where high lumen output is required
In areas that require lamps to reach full illumination immediately.

Saving More Energy with Innovative Controls

Some manufacturers are introducing innovative control strategies for additional energy savings.
Although most units cannot be dimmed, at least two systems allow for full dimming. One company has teamed with the University of California Lighting Technology Center at the University of California Davis campus to demonstrate a bi-level induction lighting system. This system has two brightness levels. In areas such as parking garages, the light remains at half brightness in the absence of occupants and moves to full brightness when an occupancy sensor shows the presence of someone entering the area. (PDF 3.0 MB). Download Adobe Reader.

Utility Involvement in Induction Lighting
Utilities throughout the country are installing and/or promoting induction lighting. For example, many Northwest public utilities are offering incentives. One utility in New Jersey has a program offering municipal customers the opportunity to replace older mercury vapor street lighting fixtures with new induction lighting fixtures.

LED Lighting

LED is a light source which uses semiconductors and electroluminescence to create light. There are two major kinds of light emitting diodes: LED and OLED. The LED is different than EL lamp in that it uses a small semiconductor crystal with reflectors and other parts to make the light brighter and focused into a single point. The OLED is very similar to the EL lamp in design, using a flat sandwich of materials. It is different than the LED and EL lamp in that it uses organic (carbon) molecules in the layer that emits light.

Currently the LED lamp is popular due to it's efficiency and many believe it is a 'new' technology. The LED as we know it has been around for over 50 years. The recent development of white LEDs is what has brought it into the public eye as a replacement for other white light sources.

Common uses: indication lights on devices, small and large lamps, traffic lights, large video screens, signs, street lighting(although this is still not widespread)

-Energy efficient source of light for short distances and small areas. The typical LED requires only 30-60 milliwatts to operate
-Durable and shockproof unlike glass bulb lamp types
-Directional nature is useful for some applications like reducing stray light pollution on streetlights


LEDs create light by electroluminescence in a semiconductor material. Electroluminescence is the phenomenon of a material emitting light when electric current or an electric field is passed through it - this happens when electrons are sent through the material and fill electron holes. An electron hole exists where an atom lacks electrons (negatively charged) and therefore has a positive charge. Semiconductor materials like germanium or silicon can be "doped" to create and control the number of electron holes. Doping is the adding of other elements to the semiconductor material to change its properties. By doping a semiconductor you can make two separate types of semiconductors in the same crystal. The boundary between the two types is called a p-n junction. The junction only allows current to pass through it one way, this is why they are used as diodes. LEDs are made using p-n junctions. As electrons pass through one crystal to the other they fill electron holes. They emit photons (light). This is also how the semiconductor laser works. put over time