As LED technology is constantly evolving to meet the demands of new applications, LED testing requirements are also undergoing several changes to address the new reality. This article focuses on the growing need for LED testing equipment and the latest models available in the market.
By Megha Rawat
The current manufacturing process for LEDs does not lead to consistent optical properties. Colour and brightness intensities can vary from component to component even in the same batch of production. This is the reason why LEDs have to be tested during the production stage as well as in the final application.
How is the LED testing industry faring?
With the substantial demand for LEDs in the market, the role of testing in LED manufacturing has also become crucial. Electronics Bazaar reached out to a few industry experts to get a deeper insight into the LED testing scenario in India.
When asked about the importance of LED and light testing, Ajay Gupta, director of Embuilt Technology says, “Testing for LED manufacturing is very important; while companies invest in research and development (R&D), the important thing is to deploy systems to enable operators to do pass/fail testing of drivers and complete assemblies.”
S.K. Aggarwal, owner of Mangal Instrumentation, says that LED testing is important because quality control is a crucial aspect while manufacturing lighting products. The Bureau of Indian Standards, which is a government body, sets the standards for quality tests and keeps a check on the testing of all LED and lighting products. Manufacturers who do not test their products, cannot sell or even store their manufactured goods.
Gupta adds, “I think that, these days, automation is the best way for LED testing because it is fast, smart, reliable and reduces the need for manpower.”
Parameters to consider for testing
LEDs are subjected to numerous tests to check various technical parameters like electrical safety, electromagnetic compatibility and energy efficiency. The testing of electrical and DC parameters is also very important, like voltage, current, wattage, efficiency, power factor, frequency, Total Harmonic Distortion (THD), current THD, etc.
Apart from these, performance related considerations like intensity, colour and exposure to extreme environmental conditions are tested to ensure better results.
Aggarwal points out that nowadays several environmental tests are also done for LEDs like the humidity test, rain test, dustproof test, etc. Others like electrical testing, IP testing, glow wire testing and photometric testing also have great significance.
In the section that follows, let’s look at some of the newly launched LED testing equipment being offered.
Recently launched LED testing equipment
|Model: DTM-1; Manufacturer: Embuilt Technologies|
|DTM-1 is an AC-DC converter testing instrument by Embuilt Technologies. It can be used for the comprehensive testing of LED lamps and LED drivers. It can measure AC parameters like voltage, current, wattage, PF, frequency VTHD, ATHD, and harmonics (first to 55th) as well as DC parameters like voltage, current, watts and efficiency. It is designed to help improve the quality of LED drivers, SMPSs and AC-DC converters. It has a USB port and pen drive port isolated with an internal circuit for the safety of users and operators. It also has a bar code feature for fast and easy testing, and to generate datasheets with the bar code number and the measured parameters. It provides harmonics up to the 55th order and pass/fail facility for 25 saved models.
|Model: ASC-1; Manufacturer: Embuilt Technologies|
|ASC-1 (automatic switcher and counter) by Embuilt Technologies is used for burn-in testing. It is mostly used in LED bulb and driver manufacturing and other similar industries. It automatically switches the time of connected burn-in testing devices as well as counts the number of times switching has taken place. It is a cheaper, reliable, lightweight product and is easy to handle with a load connection. It is operated by manually selecting the counter and switcher.
|Model: T5; Manufacturer: Lisun Electronics Inc.|
|Thermal parameters are key indicators of the performance of LEDs. They affect the optical parameters, electricity parameters and the life span of LEDs. This LED thermal and electrical performance analyser by Lisun Electronics Inc. is designed to measure the junction temperature, K factor, forward voltage and forward current. It has an output current range of 1mA ~ 2000mA, a thermal sink range of 5°C ~ 90°C and temperature control system accuracy of ±1°C.
|Model: IP rain test equipment; Manufacturer: Mangal Instrumentation|
|Oblique rain test equipment is used for rainproof (IP3) and splashproof luminaires (IP4). This apparatus from Mangal Instrumentation consists of a semi-circular tube perforated by 0.4mm diameter holes at a specified distance from each other and directed towards the centre of the semi-circle. An electric pump is provided for the re-circulation of water. It consists of a motor, a reduction gear box, a plate, etc, with waterproof enclosures.
|Model: SRI-2000; Manufacturer: Mangal Instrumentation|
|This spectral light meter is designed to test LEDs and lighting products. It has a long focal length and high spectrometer for measurement. It boots fast to measure the parameters instantly. The measurement result is obtained in real-time on a display. It comes with a 3000mAh battery that provides a backup for five hours of operation.