June 02, 13
T8 Fluorescent Lamps
- T8 Fluorescent Lamps
Fluorescent lamps have been around commercially for a surprisingly long time. Their origins can be traced back to 1857, when Alexandre Becquerel, a French physicist, experimented with early methods of creating a fluorescent lamp. In 1896, Thomas Edison, famed for bringing the world the incandescent light bulb, also invented a type of fluorescent lamp that was never produced, although it was patented. Today’s popular T8 fluorescent had to wait to be perfected, however, until 1981. Our modern world and all its dark spaces have now adopted the T8 as one of the premier industry standards for lighting the way.
The contemporary T8 lamp, of 32 watts, appeared in the U.S.in 1981 as the next step in improvements after its predecessor, the four-foot fluorescent. Now widely used as a replacement lamp for the first generation T12, the second generation T8 can be readily obtained through any major lighting solution manufacturer. It comes in various wattages and a vast ray of configurations, from U-shaped to straight tubes, to suit differing needs and applications.
Also known in the industry as “high-lumen T8s,” “high-performance T8s” and even “super T8s,” this spectacularly bright addition to modern luminaires continues to grab the spotlight. T8s actual output generated varies among lamp models considerably, as does its color rendering index value. One can find nearly any value between 2800 and 3200 lumens of light output in the various T8 lamp models.
T8 fluorescents require a rated electric power of between a minimum of 32 watts and a maximum of 34.6 watts in order to operate. Those T8 lamps which operate on special circuits to provide an instant start typically provide less power than those with the “rapid-start” label, since the instant-start type of operation does not require electrode heating. Lamp power, however, can surpass the typical 32-watt value by over 5%, which becomes a factor when estimating the operating costs for commercial or industrial usage and making comparisons.
The T8 Efficacy
The T8 fluorescent lamp is recognized as one of the most efficient devices in the lighting industry, along with the third generation T5. The T8 has a 26mm or 1” diameter and the T5 has a 16mm or 5/8” diameter. The original T12 has a 1-1/2” diameter, so these numbers are decreasing, even as the lamp’s efficiency increases.
Lifespan of the T8
In scientific industrial testing, the life (or duration of performance before failing) of the various different T8 models spanned from 20,000 hours to 30,000 hours. Researchers notes that these ratings can vary, depending on the operating cycle of the lamp, as well as other factors. In general, IESNA puts the cycle of operation standard for the T8 at three hours on and twenty minutes off. The lifespan of the T8 fluorescent lamp may increase by as much as double, however, when the lamp is in constant operation. Type of ballast employed for the operation of T8 lamps is another factor that affects its overall lifespan.
HiBrite offers state-of-the-art, cutting edge T8 fluorescents ready for hanging, eco-friendly, lightweight and trouble-free.