The light-emitting diode (LED)

A light-emitting diode (LED) is based on the semiconductor diode. When the polarization of input power is correct and the diode is switched on, current flows from the anode (positive) to the cathode (negative). The electrons are able to recombine with holes within the device, releasing energy in the form of photons. This effect is called electroluminescence and the color of the light is determined by the energy gap of the semiconductor and materials used in its construction. LED's can come in various colors which are created by the materials used to manufacture them. For example, a white light can be created by using a blue LED and coating it with yellow phosphor or with a combination of RGB light (red, green and blue).

An LED is usually small in area and it uses integrated optical reflectors and a lens to shape its radiated light pattern.

How to determine the lifetime of an LED?
The lifetime of an LED bulb is determined when the electroluminescence has fallen to 70% of its original luminescence output. It should be noted that an LED bulb will continue to function after this time but at a reduced electroluminescence output.

Are LED`s good for the environment?
LED's are very energy efficient and reduce carbon emissions. In fact, you may never need to buy a replacement bulb again, so no more throwing burnt out bulbs in the trash. They are also RoHS compliant and mercury free, unlike florescent bulbs which contain a high amount of mercury and phosphor. This can create a health hazard if broken inside a living area or if disposed of incorrectly.

Why do LEDs use such little power?
The Filament based "LIGHT BULB" consumes more power than the light produced because large amounts of energy consumed by these bulbs go to the production of "HEAT". LEDs produce very little “HEAT", and do not use filaments. Thus, LEDs are much more efficient in consumption and output.

Are LED's costly?
LEDs are more energy efficient than normal halogen bulbs (around 90% less) and can cut the usage demands on an RV, boat or off grid housing battery bank. They may also cut the costs of rising electric bills for the average household. On average, around 90% of the electricity consumed by an LED is converted into light, whereas a standard bulb only converts around 15%.

Although the initial cost is higher, the savings in battery power and long service lifetimes, typically 25,000 to 100,000 hours will more than recapture the cost outlay and even create savings in the long run. Good LED bulbs last about 60,000 hours, compared to a 1003 incandescent bulb which is rated to last 200 hours.