Attempting a DIY LED fixture - Part 2. New pics 9/27 (56k)
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:09 PM   #1
malaybiswas
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Attempting a DIY LED fixture - Part 2. New pics 9/27 (56k)


I am planning to make a LED light fixture (actually 2 of them) to replace my T5s for my 22 gallon tanks. This is a challenging project for me since my skills and knowledge with electrical equipments and circuits is very limited. So much of it is still very much is planning and design stage now.

I will need a lot of help with it to make it a success so every feedback and suggestion is very welcome and appreciated. I need HELP!!

I am planning to use Luxeon Star LEDs. Here is basic circuit diagram I am planning to use. My first question is with parallel circuits. Below the circuit diagram are 2 wiring diagrams. Which one is the right way to do parallel circuit to evenly distribute 1050 mA into 3 legs of the circuit?
Note that the circuit diagrams are based of sample circuits provided at luxeonstar.com



Next question. I am planning to use either
LED120A0024V10F (Xitanium 120VAC 25W 1050mA driver)

Datasheet - http://www.luxeonstar.com/xitanium-120v-drivers.pdf

Or
LED120A0024V10D (Xitanium 120VAC 25W 1050mA dimming driver)

Datasheet - http://britelite.com/pdf/a_25w_dimming.pdf

I am considering the second one in hope to build a circuit off it to automatically dim the lights over a 1-2 hr period for dawn/dusk effect. However I am completely clueless how to do it. Can anybody suggest a circuit (with diagram and components) to make such a circuit off any of these drivers? I am planning to use 15 LEDs (7 blue, 8 white) as in the circuit (350mA/3.42Vf each)

Below are a couple of diagrams I put together to plan the layout of the lights over the tank to cover most of the area. The light intensity at the bottom of the tank is in progress to be calculated. I plan to use 25 degree Fraen lenses.
image 1

Light coverage
image 2
If these links don't work for you, the images are attached to one of my posts on page 2 as well.

More questions on heat sinking and other aspects coming soon.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:21 PM   #2
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Check out a guy named evilc66 (evilc666?) on the nano-reef.com forums. Read his posts.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:30 PM   #3
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It's all the same circuit. Whatever would look the neatest. I would guess that would be wiring diagram #1.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:34 PM   #4
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Yeah those are both paralell. And I'm pretty sure DIY HIDs would be cheaper.
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Old 02-09-2009, 07:30 PM   #5
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Thank you all so far. I have been checking various forums for circuit ideas for dawn/dusk. While I get some parts of it, my biggest confusion is how (and which parts) of those circuits can be integrated with Xitanium drivers since I am not clear how the internal circuit of the drivers look like.

As such any specifics on automatic dimmer circuits involving Xitanium drivers would be a great help.
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Old 02-09-2009, 07:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coolnick View Post
Yeah those are both paralell. And I'm pretty sure DIY HIDs would be cheaper.
The ready made product that closely resembles what I want to do costs $800 for the specs I need. Although I am going to use the Luxeon products which makes it a little expensive I still think it will cost me anything between $300-$400 (including the tools I need to buy) so yes it is a bargain if I can do it.
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Old 02-09-2009, 07:33 PM   #7
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Check out a guy named evilc66 (evilc666?) on the nano-reef.com forums. Read his posts.
Thank you epicfish. I'll check that out.
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:02 PM   #8
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Can I ask what your goals are for the tank? This will help decide if the array will fit your needs. You have a good start, but it may need a little tweaking.

You mentioned that you are looking to replace 2 T5s, but don't state wattage. Also you haven't stated your tank dimentions. This info will help shape things.

Epic, thanks for the plug
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:12 PM   #9
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Ahh, speaking of the devil.
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilc66 View Post
Can I ask what your goals are for the tank? This will help decide if the array will fit your needs. You have a good start, but it may need a little tweaking.

You mentioned that you are looking to replace 2 T5s, but don't state wattage. Also you haven't stated your tank dimentions. This info will help shape things.

Epic, thanks for the plug
Currently I have 1 65W 10000K T5 per 22 gallon tank. It is about 3 WPG but not sure if that is the right way to measure. My tanks are 24" L X 15" W X 18" deep.

The light bars are 8" inches above the tank surface and the average depth of substrate is about 2.5 to 3 inches". So I did my calculations of the light spread at the substrate for a depth of 8" + (18" - 3") = 23". I actually calculated for 22" just to account for slopes.

I am doing my own calculations to determine PAR at the bottom but they will be highly approximated. Please suggest liberally

Let me know if I am missing any other information.
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:33 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilc66 View Post
Can I ask what your goals are for the tank? This will help decide if the array will fit your needs. You have a good start, but it may need a little tweaking.

You mentioned that you are looking to replace 2 T5s, but don't state wattage. Also you haven't stated your tank dimentions. This info will help shape things.

Epic, thanks for the plug
Forgot about the goal. Not sure if I understand the question totally but as I mentioned earlier I want to replace the T5s. The lED should be able to support plant growth so I am looking at the combination of blue and white (no red...but let me know). I currently have about 3 WPG but as I read in multiple places they are not a good measure. I am not really sure what is a good measure for lights for plants.

I got the references of 100 PAR and 4 lumen/sq inch. Not sure which is better target but trying to calculate on the setup I sketched and see how close it can produce with these targets.

If I am correct lumen/sq in is probably not a good measure for light intensity helping photosynthesis so I tried to place the blue lights such that they cover maximum ground surface. That way along with intensity I am also ensuring that the right wavelenghts are hitting the surface. The rest of the places in the grid were filled up with white for visual impact only.

Let me know if that helps explain what I am trying to achieve.
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:36 PM   #12
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Finally, this is optional, but if I can do it I want to add dawn/dusk effect such that when timer is ON

light intensity increases from 0 to 100% within 1-2 hr time frame
remains at maximum intensity for about 8 hours
dims gradually to 0% over 1-2 hr time frame.
Timer switches off

This is where I was considering the 2 types of Xitanium drivers but so far I am clueless how build a automatic dimmer cuircuit on top of those.

I already have moon lighting on a separate timer so that will remain as is.
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Old 02-09-2009, 11:19 PM   #13
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The dimmer portion of things might be difficult, but not impossible.

For your setup, I think 15 LEDs might be a little light. 24 might be a little better (8x3 grid). It will give better overall coverage with better overlap from LED to LED. Depending on how heavily you plan on planting the tank, very few LEDs will make it harder to get light to areas that are shaded by other plants.

In regards to your optics choice, what made you decide on 25 degree lenses? Something like that will give extremely high PAR numbers that would be the equivalent to over a 250W MH over the tank. For the power levels you are looking at, you can run the setup with a wide angle lense. Something in a 60-80 degree range. That will still get you very high light levels, almost to the point where you will have to dim it down to be more practical. The only reason to use the lenses is to increase perfomance on the substrate. If your tank was shallow (12" or less) you could easily get away without optics.

Color wise, no blue. Not necessary here. You can add a few reds, but they will tend to show up quite badly as red streaks in the tank. You can diffuse them, but you might just be better using a mix of cool white and a few warm white LEDs.

Have you thought about what you are going to use as a heatsink yet?

EDIT: the pictures you have for the tank layout at the bottom of your first post are not working.
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:08 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilc66 View Post
The dimmer portion of things might be difficult, but not impossible.

For your setup, I think 15 LEDs might be a little light. 24 might be a little better (8x3 grid). It will give better overall coverage with better overlap from LED to LED. Depending on how heavily you plan on planting the tank, very few LEDs will make it harder to get light to areas that are shaded by other plants.

In regards to your optics choice, what made you decide on 25 degree lenses? Something like that will give extremely high PAR numbers that would be the equivalent to over a 250W MH over the tank. For the power levels you are looking at, you can run the setup with a wide angle lense. Something in a 60-80 degree range. That will still get you very high light levels, almost to the point where you will have to dim it down to be more practical. The only reason to use the lenses is to increase perfomance on the substrate. If your tank was shallow (12" or less) you could easily get away without optics.

Color wise, no blue. Not necessary here. You can add a few reds, but they will tend to show up quite badly as red streaks in the tank. You can diffuse them, but you might just be better using a mix of cool white and a few warm white LEDs.

Have you thought about what you are going to use as a heatsink yet?

EDIT: the pictures you have for the tank layout at the bottom of your first post are not working.
Thanks a lot for all the suggestions. This is great

I edited the first post for the pictures below. That would show why I decided on 15 bulbs and 25 degree optics. I found that to be optimum for coverage vs concentration. I originally thought of using 45 degree optics, but that led to too much light going outside the tank. Please have a look at the scheme in the first post and let me know if 15 with 25 degrees seems fine in terms of coverage (the drawings are in proper dimensions based on luxeon datasheets).

I will also check on the intensity. I am confused on one point. if I use 24 bulbs with 60-80 degree optics, wouldn't that waste a lot of light outside the tank? Also would be reduce the PAR or increase it.

Do you have any formula that I can use to measure the PAR for a given combination of lights for a given depth?

Last 2 questions
1. Why not blue?
2. Can you suggest any automatic dimmer circuits?

Thanks.
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Old 02-10-2009, 01:22 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilc66 View Post
The dimmer portion of things might be difficult, but not impossible.

For your setup, I think 15 LEDs might be a little light. 24 might be a little better (8x3 grid). It will give better overall coverage with better overlap from LED to LED. Depending on how heavily you plan on planting the tank, very few LEDs will make it harder to get light to areas that are shaded by other plants.

In regards to your optics choice, what made you decide on 25 degree lenses? Something like that will give extremely high PAR numbers that would be the equivalent to over a 250W MH over the tank. For the power levels you are looking at, you can run the setup with a wide angle lense. Something in a 60-80 degree range. That will still get you very high light levels, almost to the point where you will have to dim it down to be more practical. The only reason to use the lenses is to increase perfomance on the substrate. If your tank was shallow (12" or less) you could easily get away without optics.

Color wise, no blue. Not necessary here. You can add a few reds, but they will tend to show up quite badly as red streaks in the tank. You can diffuse them, but you might just be better using a mix of cool white and a few warm white LEDs.

Have you thought about what you are going to use as a heatsink yet?

EDIT: the pictures you have for the tank layout at the bottom of your first post are not working.

Regarding the heatsink, I am checking on options but have not yet decided. Actually my tanks are open top. The lights will hang from light bars (link to my thread on the DIY cabinet + light bar will give you an idea of how the lights will be held).

As such I have to DIY the light fixture as well which should be light weight, hold all the stuff (bulbs, driver, heatsink etc.). As such I am looking for light weight boxes but have not found any yet. The fixture will probably dictate the heatsink options. I will post the design once I think of it and find the material for it. Need a cover too (thinking plexiglass) but not sure if I need it since I have the optics. Also insulation will be important.

Any ideas on the fixture? Something 24"X15"X4-5"?
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