In recent years, AC-LED light engines, also referred to as driverless LED light engines, have become a mainstay in the world of solid-state lighting as well as the entire lighting industry. In fact, many companies generate more than half of their sales from these products. From the standpoint of expense and intricacy, the attraction is clear because a simple driver circuit is able to be used on circuit boards hosting LEDs without the need of a detached driver module. The result is considerably more electrically efficient and the elimination of perceptible flicker.
Reshaping the Industry
There are a wide range of benefits to using driverless LED light engines. Because there is no LED driver, the luminaire design is streamlined into a compact and flat form. While some of the older products only offered 83% efficient and a high 120-Hz flicker that made them less desirable, today’s products offer as much as 10% greater efficiency and less flicker, even at 120 Hz.
The earlier designs of this product used circuits to produce a flash at 120 times every second. The result was no better than the quality that one would get from fluorescent tube lighting. Experts have improved the design and the arrangement of the controlling switches. A current limiter circuit or current controlled resistor is now being used in the place of the simple resistor.
No More Flicker
The engines of today feature an almost constant LED current. The output current gap that occurs as the capacitors recharge is minimal at only 1.5 msec. In addition, this only happens two times in each of the power line cycles. The frequency of the circuit operation is over 600 Hz, which is well beyond anything that can be detected by the human eye. Thus, these LED light engines is perceptively free of any flicker.
The driverless LED light engines currently on the market can be used in a broad range of product. However, it is important that LEDs are properly placed. This design is ideal for use by consumers in cove lighting, under-cabinet lighting, and task lighting.
By eliminating the LED driver, the level of physical limitations is drastically reduced. A whole new creation platform has become available for designers in the luminaire industry. A wide array of sizes and shapes are possible, which includes circles, rectangles, squares, and many more without compromising the performance of the LED light engines. Overall, the lighting industry is moving toward incredible product evolution thanks to this technology.