Page 10 - AquaRay

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Whilst blue
“moonlight” bulbs really
get your corals
fluorescing, we all know
it doesn’t really look
like true moonlight.
Get the best of both
worlds with
patented Nature
This uses a special blue
LED that has a white
shift to the spectrum,
making your tank look
more like a natural reef.
This technology is relatively new to aquarium
lighting, but has taken the hobby by storm due
to its longevity and practicality. It is based on
semiconductor technology that emits visible
light when a current is passed through it.
White LEDs are based on chips, also known as
dies, which emit blue light but have a stable
phosphor coating that conver ts the light into a
nice smooth white spectrum.This is why white
LED spectra always have a spike in the blue
area.They are extremely efficient (up to around
120 lm/W and improving all the time), but to
reach this potential it is very impor tant that
they are used correctly. LEDs become less
efficient when they are run at higher currents,
and it is critical that they are kept cool.This
means that they need a suitably-sized heat sink
(a chunk of aluminium used to dissipate heat), a
good thermal path (achieved by using thermally
conductive materials right through from the
LED to heat sink), and if needed, some forced
cooling such as fans.
It is difficult to make quick comparisons
between LED and other lighting types, because
the light produced by an LED is used more
effectively. On paper it may produce less light in
terms of lumens, but all that light is directed
straight down into the aquarium and does not
spill out through the glass or over the top of
the tank.This is why PAR and lux measurements
are more relevant when making comparisons
(see page 2). Sometimes an aquarium with LED
lighting may not look as bright as when it is lit
by other technologies, even though it actually
has the same or possibly more light over it.This
is because the angle of most of the light beams
hitting the inside of the glass is larger than the
critical angle, meaning that the light is reflected
back into the aquarium rather than passing
through the glass and hitting your eyes.This can
be proven using light meters inside and outside
the aquarium. So the great thing about LEDs is
that they can make your aquarium a very
attractive feature instead of an overbearing
focal point that lights up the entire room!