Sulfur Lamp

From Open Source Ecology
Jump to: navigation, search


  • A type of light that is similar to a gas discharge lamp, or plasma lamp (neon light), but uses microwaves instead of electrodes
  • These thus have a high brightness, yet also a long lifespan
  • The main issues have been magnetron life, and how to keep the bulb from overheating (Some models rotate the bulb, circularlly polarized light may work according to some studies)
  • Not for small applications, but could be used for projector lights, stage lights, and other high brightness applications

OTS Options

Fusion Lighting Inc.

  • Seems to have been one of the original manufacturers, if not the inventor
  • May have made the devices used by the USA's Federal Government for things like the Air and Space Museum (need to see if they still use sulfur lamps, also could maybe ask for a Tom Scott esque tour etc)
  • A 1999 Electrical Construction & Maintenance Magazine (EC&M) Page Titled "This year's lighting models"
    • Quote:
      • "Three manufacturers now market induction (fluorescent) systems featuring long life, good color, and energy efficacy. They use either an induction coil to create a magnetic field or microwaves to excite the mercury in a lamp in order to produce ultraviolet energy that in turn excites a phosphor coating on the bulb's inside surface. Depending on the lamp, manufacturers make claims for lamp life from 10,000 to 100,000 hours. Lamp life is primarily limited by the degradation of the phosphors. Called an electrodeless lamp because it lacks either a filament or a metal electrode, the sulfur lamp consists of a golf-ball sized (38mm) quartz glass sphere, or bulb, containing argon gas and a pinch of sulfur at less than one atmosphere. When bombarded with energy from a microwave system, the internal pressure increase to between two and five atmospheres of sulfur vapor, which forms the plasma medium that produces visible light by molecular radiation. Fiber-optic and light guide illumination systems take advantage of the compact sulfur light source mentioned above. 3M Corp. now offers its Light Pipe technology for use with the Solar 1000 sulfur lamp from Fusion Lighting. The Light Pipe is a hollow acrylic or polycarbonate tube lined with a layer of optical lighting film having a nearly 99% reflectance efficiency. Recent advances in micro-machining and polymer processing of lighting film make the final breakthrough possible. Potential applications include aircraft hangers, tunnel lighting, parking facilities and hazardous location lighting."

Pure Plasma Lighting

Hive Lighting

  • They have since moved on to all LED Lighting, but they sold the following products:
    • Wasp Plasma PAR
      • May or May Not Be the Same (Pun?) as the "Hive Lighting BEE Plasma Flood"
    • Hive Lighting Wasp 1k

Used / New Old Stock Options

DIY/OS Designs

  • No "proper" ones yet, still in the testing phase
  • User: Eric here, i reached out to one channel with a promising design (worked except for cooling) for basic testing
  • Also the same channel who made a Plasma Toroid Lamp ( BackMacSci (YouTube Channel) ) has a discord channel for Tesla Coil / plasma adjacent things from a DIY perspective, got on their to see what people with actual hands on experience / fab capabilities thing

Plasmarist (YouTube Channel)

W B (YouTube Channel)

Research Papers

  • "A High-Efficiency Indirect Lighting System Utilizing the Solar 1000 Sulfur Lamp
  • A 1996 Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory "Berkeley Lab Currents" Article Titled "First Sulfur Lamp Lighting Fixtures Debut"
    • Quote:
      • "Berkeley Lab scientists have developed the first lighting fixtures to capitalize on the extraordinary brightness and remarkable energy efficiency of the award-winning sulfur lamp. Prototypes of these new fixtures were installed in the lobby of the headquarters of the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) and unveiled to the public last week." ... "The research was carried out under a partnership between Berkeley Lab and Cooper Lighting, a major U.S. manufacturer. Although the new fixtures were designed around the physical dimensions and photometric properties of a specific commercial sulfur lamp, the technology can be applied to other highly bright, energy-efficient electrode-less lamps now under development." ... "The sulfur lamp was invented by Fusion Lighting Inc., a small company in Rockville, Md., which is now field testing a 1,000-watt version called the Solar 1000. A major impediment to the wide-spread adoption of the sulfur lamp has been the lack of high-efficiency fixture systems for delivering its light to the interiors of commercial spaces. Sulfur lamps on display at the headquarters of the U.S. Department of Energy, which helped fund the development of the prototype, relied on a "light guide" to distribute the illumination. "Light guides are hollow tubes lined with a reflective material," says Siminovitch. "Light from the source travels along the reflective material and bleeds out to illuminate a space." " ... "Siminovitch and two colleagues in E&E's Lighting Research Group--Carl Gould and Erik Page--have developed a fixture that can be fitted with different reflectors to provide a variety of light distribution patterns. The fixture can also be mounted in various ways--on a free-standing kiosk, or on a wall or ceiling--to provide a high degree of flexibility and suitability across a broad range of interior lighting applications, from shopping malls to interior complexes and offices. The free-standing kiosks are especially adaptable. "A series of detailed studies have been completed on developing optimized reflectors (for the kiosks) to accommodate different ceiling heights," Siminovitch says. "By varying the distribution geometry and the relative spacing of the kiosks, a large range of illuminance can be easily delivered. "Siminovitch claims that a single kiosk could be used to replace from 10 to as many as 30 conventional ceiling fixtures in an open-space office. In laboratory tests, their light fixtures scored an efficiency rating of 85 to 88 percent, which is as much as 25 percent better than the ratings for light guides, and among the highest ratings ever scored for any white light source/fixture system. Working closely with a manufacturer of light fixtures was a critical asset to this research, Siminovitch says."

Internal Links

External Links