Frequently Asked Questions

What are LEDs?

LED stands for light-emitting diode. LEDs are small light sources that become illuminated by the movement of electrons through a semiconductor material. LEDs can be integrated into all sorts of products to provide white and colored light, such as flashlights, light bulbs, and integrated light fixtures.


How are LED lighting products different from other lighting, like fluorescent or incandescent?

LEDs emit light in a specific direction, whereas an incandescent or fluorescent bulb emits light — and heat — in all directions. For direct lighting applications LED lighting uses both light and energy more efficiently. For example, an incandescent or compact fluorescent (CFL) bulb inside of a recessed can will waste about half of the light that it produces, while a recessed down light with LEDs only produces light where it's needed — in the room below. LED lighting, when designed well, can be more efficient, durable, versatile and longer lasting than incandescent and fluorescents lighting.


What are the basic parts of LED lighting?

LED lighting starts with a tiny chip (most commonly about one square millimeter) comprised of layers of semi-conducting material. LED packages may contain just one chip or multiple chips, mounted on heat-conducting material called a heat sink and usually enclosed in a lens. The resulting device, typically around 7 to 9 mm on a side, can be used separately or in arrays. LED devices are mounted on a circuit board, which can be programmed to include lighting controls such as dimming, light sensing and pre-set timing. The circuit board is mounted on another heat sink to manage the heat from all the LEDs in the array. The system is then encased in a lighting fixture, architectural structure, or even a "light bulb" package.

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