Sensationally bright

Author : Paul Metcalfe, Product Manager, Rittal

20 July 2017

Poor light conditions in enclosures make the job of electrical professionals extremely difficult, not least because the colours of cables become harder to distinguish. Dimly lit enclosures can allow mistakes to creep in. A new generation of lights from Rittal, developed specially for enclosure technology, provides users with a good solution.

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“More light!” will be a familiar, exasperated cry to electrical professionals who typically have to work for several hours at a time on an enclosure. It’s all too common for lighting in an enclosure to be overlooked during planning, meaning that illumination is frequently poor whenever work is carried out. Identifying the colours of different wires can be difficult or even impossible. But problems or delays during maintenance, or troubleshooting errors caused by insufficient lighting, can be expensive.

A good solution is a light that is integrated into the enclosure. It must meet a wide range of requirements of controls, switchgear and machinery manufacturers, as well as the needs of the service and maintenance personnel who use it.

Besides delivering an optimum amount of light, any solution also needs to offer simple installation, flexible placement and international applicability. The new generation of Rittal LED system lights, developed specially for enclosures, meets these requirements.

LED technology with high energy efficiency

The new lights use LEDs as their source of illumination. LED technology, which has gained acceptance in many areas of the automotive industry, as well as in office and residential lighting, offers two key advantages. Firstly, it is highly energy efficient compared to fluorescent tubes, which means it can supply the same luminous flux with much lower electrical power consumption, and without heating up to the same extent. Secondly, LED light sources have far longer service lives.

Two models of the new enclosure lights, with luminous fluxes of 900 and 1,200 lumens, are available. However, for optimum illumination, the light must also reach the right places. This is achieved through an attachment of transparent plastic into which Fresnel lenses are integrated. These focus the light in such a way that the entire enclosure is precisely illuminated – even at the bottom. In other words, the light is directed to exactly where it is needed. If the enclosure light is not attached at the top, but is laterally mounted in the enclosure, the lens cap can be easily removed and put back on the other way round, without affecting performance.

There are three options for switching the enclosure lights on or off:

1. A switch integrated within the light

2. A door-operated switch (available as an accessory)

3. A motion detector, which is a standard feature of lamps with 1,200 lumens

The lights can also be equipped with a socket. The lamps are supplied with voltage via low-voltage distributors even when the system is disconnected, so there will always be enough electricity to run a laptop, for example.

Integrates seamlessly into the enclosure

The new enclosure lights fit neatly into Rittal’s TS 8 baying system. Typically, each model has three mounting options: a magnetic retainer; a clip fastener in the TS 8 section; or a screw fastening. The holders for screw-on mounting are simply unfolded from the body of the lamp. Assembly is quick and easy in each case, saving valuable time during installation and minimising costs.

The new lights make assembly much easier: pre-assembled cables with connectors can be connected to the lights and the connector can be swivelled through 90 degrees. It means that the cable can be easily installed, even in narrow enclosures, at just 600 mm wide. Lights in adjacent enclosures can be linked by connecting cables, which are also available pre-configured.

The new enclosure lights have a wide-range input voltage of 100 to 240 V AC and can consequently be used in countries worldwide, removing headaches for electrical and mechanical engineers designing switchgear and controllers for use internationally. The lights also have the relevant international certifications and approvals (for example, from the UL for the US market or the CCC for China).

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