LED Vs Induction: Which is Right for You?

For over 100 years, induction lighting has provided a source of light for warehouses, factories, school gyms, and anywhere else where extremely long lasting bulbs are needed. Invented by Nikola Tesla and patented in the 1960’s by General Electric, induction bulbs contain no fragile electrode burning inside to produce light, rather they contain a vacuum sealed gas and rely on ballasts. There is a major benefit to this, as the life expectancy of induction lighting fixtures in most cases is around 60,000 hours, and some retrofit upgrade kits can last up to 100,000 hours. Considering there are 8760 hours in a year, you can except somewhere between 6 and 11 years of life from each bulb. This is particularly good news for more difficult or hard to reach projects such as school gyms and warehouses, where replacing bulbs is much more complicated. And with over 100 years of use and improvements, induction bulbs are tested and proven, giving you reliable statistics to make a sound decision.

For all the upside to induction lighting, there are a few downsides. Induction bulbs are generally not dimmable, and they take a long time to warm up in cold weather. Plus, since the technology has been around for so long, many companies still use 20 year old ballasts with new bulbs, making the bulbs more unreliable. Interesting though, the technology is still being developed, and recently engineers has been using computers and IP addresses to help control the lighting, allowing for some dimmable functionality.

There are pros and cons to each bulb, and depending on the installation, one bulb will work better than the other.

LED Induction
Pros Low Wattage

Readily Available

Longer Life Expectacy

Directional Light Source

Low Maintenance

Dimmable

Proven Track Record Over 100 Years

Low Wattage

Extremely Long Life

Less Expensive Than LED

Wide Range of Applications

Low Maintenance Costs

Cons Can be More Expensive

Payback May Not be Realized Quickly in Some Instances

Highly Sensitive to Heat

Long Warm-up Time in Cold Weather

Not Dimmable

Difficult to Control Directionally

Sources:
http://www.buildings.com/article-details/articleid/18718/title/led-vs-induction-lighting/viewall/true.aspx
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrodeless_lamp
http://www.edisontechcenter.org/InductionLamps.html