ON Semi drives LEDs with constant current
Migration from incandescent lighting to solid state alternatives is continuing, but if LED adoption is to reach applications such as replacement lamps in the domestic environment or automotive interiors, new driver and control techniques are needed, argues Steve Sheard of ON Semiconductor in an analysis piece on Electronics Weekly.
Supplying LED arrays with a constant forward current is the preferred approach for maintaining consistent luminosity across multiple emitters. It also safeguards against LEDs being harmed by over driving.
One way of regulating an array’s current is placing a resistor in series with it. There are, unfortunately, drawbacks with this, as resistors have relatively large power dissipation – causing unwanted heat to be generated and lowering overall efficiency.
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