Application Guide to LED drivers
This white paper will guide you through the process of choosing a suitable LED power supply (LED driver) for your application and explain how to get the best out of you power supply.
There are a number of things you will need to know before you can start to select the most suitable power supply.
Table of Contents
Before a LED driver can be selected the electrical specifications of the LED lighting need to be identified.
Depending on the design of the light fitting it will require either a constant voltage LED driver, or a constant current LED driver.
Constant voltage LED drivers are used to power LED light fittings, or LED strips that incorporate some form of electronic current regulation.
They maintain a constant voltage output by allowing the output current to vary.
The two most common voltages used are 12V and 24V and are readily available. However, there are light installations that require a higher output voltage. Reputable stockists will usually carry some stocks of the less common voltages.
Apart from the required voltage, you will also need to know how much power (WATTS) are required. If the LED driver is too small, it could become overloaded which has the potential to shorten the life of the LED driver.
Constant current LED drivers maintain a constant current output by allowing the voltage to vary.
This type of LED driver is used to power LED light fittings, or LED strips with no internal current regulation.
The actual current required to drive the LED light fitting can vary anywhere between 250mA, right up to 40A.
Once you have established the current required to power your lights, you will also need to know the forward voltage range required to drive the LEDs. The LED’s electrical specifications should show the required current, which must remain constant and the voltage range in which the current should be delivered in order for the LEDs to work.
You can select a LED driver with a wider forward voltage range than required. It is important that the voltage range of the LED driver accommodates both the minimum and maximum voltage required to driver the lights.
If a dimmable LED driver is required, it is important to ascertain what type of controller will be used to dim the lights. This could be something as straight forward as the trailing, or leading-edge TRIAC dimmer switches you find in most homes, or it could be a DALI based lighting control system.
The most commonly used dimming controllers in Australia include:
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