A new design platform aims to
help engineers select LEDs, drivers, wiring, heat sinks and virtually every
other component that's need in an LED-based lighting system.
Known as the Nevalo SSL system
, the new platform purports
to speed the LED (light-emitting diode) design process and help engineers get
their products to market faster. The maker of the platform, TE Connectivity
(formerly known as Tyco Electronics), says it is making a special effort to
target mechanical engineers who aren't yet familiar with the controls, optics
and heat transfer issues associated with LED-based systems.
"We're trying to make this
simple, so that non-electrical engineers can match up their drivers to the
right light modules," notes Rob Rix, vice president of lighting communications
and industrial solutions for TE Connectivity. "With this, you don't have to
learn the electronics, you don't have to learn how to source an LED, and you
don't have to learn all the thermal management aspects of it."††††††††††
The Nevalo system includes more
than 60 LED light module options ranging from 300 to 3,400 lumens, along with
optics, drivers, dimmer controls, temperature monitoring, wiring and heat sinks
for thermal management. Printed circuit boards are stamped with forward voltage
numbers to help designers match them to the proper drivers, and are color-coded
to enable engineers to choose the right module for their application's input
TE Connectivity also developed a
thermal test instrument for the system. "They can take the thermal board, put
it in a fixture, plug it to their PC through a USB (port), and instantly get a
readout of the thermal performance of their system," Rix says. The test
instrument uses green, yellow and red lights to let users know if their system
includes sufficient heat dissipation capabilities.
"It normally takes a designer a
long time to figure out an LED lighting system," Rix says. "We're trying to
simplify that and speed their time to market by giving them the right tools."