Sponsor Message:
Aviation Technical / Operations Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Aircraft Lightbulbs (Strobes Etc.)  
User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8669 posts, RR: 43
Posted (11 years 2 months 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 2341 times:

a question to all you screwdriver folks:

What lightbulbs are used in aircraft strobes, beacons and the likes?

I've tried to find info on the web, here, but alas couldn't seem to succeed. The only thing I've fond was a thread in this forum, concerning landing lights and xenon lamps used in landing lights. But those can't be used in strobes (they have to warm up), can they?

Any info will be appreciated very much!

thank you in advance,
aloges




Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
12 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineTom775257 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2000, 153 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (11 years 2 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 2299 times:

I believe the strobes are xenon discharge much like in a camera flash. Xenon landing lights much like in cars I assume are actually essentially metal halide high intensity discharge lamps with some xenon, mercury and some other elements….however I’m not an A/C tech.

User currently offlineDc10hound From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 463 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (11 years 2 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 2280 times:

AAL AMM 33-48-00-00:

"B. Component Description
(1)Strobe Light
The strobe light consists of a xenon flash tube mounted in a metal case, one side of which has a transparent lens.The unit also contains four energy storage capacitors which are progressively charged by pulsed DC (225V) from the control assembly unit. On application of the trigger voltage from control assembly, the capacitor rapidly discharges through the xenon tube producing a flash of white light.The capacitor peak voltage is 'set' by bleed resistors which also act as safety discharge path when power is turned off."



"Eagles soar. But weasels never get sucked into jet intakes.."
User currently offlineAA61hvy From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 13977 posts, RR: 57
Reply 3, posted (11 years 2 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 2215 times:

Another question that goes a long with lights. On taxi ways, and runways, how do the lights 1). Not get run over? And 2). Not ever burn out?
I know there are very elementary questions, but I completely forgot these answers. Thanks!



Go big or go home
User currently offlineStaffan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (11 years 2 months 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 2202 times:

The runway lights are level with the tarmac, the only reason you can see the light is because it is reflected through a prism, the actual light source is below the tarmac level.

Staffan


User currently offlineSccutler From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 5484 posts, RR: 28
Reply 5, posted (11 years 2 months 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 2183 times:

...and sometimes, the runway edge lights (which do stick up a foot or so) do get hit.

Then, it's time to call the insurance carrier!



...three miles from BRONS, clear for the ILS one five approach...
User currently offlineAJ From Australia, joined Nov 1999, 2386 posts, RR: 24
Reply 6, posted (11 years 2 months 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 2155 times:

They do go out, often en-masse. An airport vehicle will inspect the lights prior to every sundown and report any non-functioning lights for repair.

User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8669 posts, RR: 43
Reply 7, posted (11 years 2 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2050 times:

Tom775257, Dc10hound, thank you for the replies.

So the strobes don't need to warm up like xenon (head)lights because they're supplied with high voltage and heavy current. But what was used before xenon bulbs were available; I presume aircraft like the DC-8 didn't have those?



Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineTom775257 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2000, 153 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (11 years 2 months 21 hours ago) and read 2021 times:

This is from memory, please accept my apologies if wrong!!
There is a difference between xenon flash tubes in strobes and ‘xenon’ headlights. A xenon flash tube as found in strobes does simply have xenon gas inside as far as I know. These are old technology and the circuits are simple (I once designed a strobe circuit for one of my high school qualifications). You get a high voltage trigger leading to ionisation of the gas and a momentary current flow through the gas giving out the intense blue/white flash.
Xenon headlamps are called as such I assume for the average consumer to relate to. Maintaining a constant arc through pure xenon is difficult (I don’t know if it is possible or not), the ‘xenon’ headlamps contain xenon and a mixture of metals. The headlamps are high intensity discharge (HID) similar to high pressure sodium lamps etc…they are essentially metal halide lamps. Usually HID lamps take minutes to warm up, however in the case of ‘xenon’ headlamps sophisticated control gear gives a huge voltage to the lamp for a number of seconds decreasing voltage as the arc stabilises. The light output from ‘xenon’ headlamps if mainly from mercury vapour excitation rather than xenon gas. It is the mercury that requires the warm up period in ‘xenon’ headlights, unlike in strobes.
Hope this helps.


User currently offlineTom775257 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2000, 153 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (11 years 2 months 21 hours ago) and read 2010 times:

OK, found you a few links:

All you could want to know about xenon strobes and circuits:
http://members.misty.com/don/donflash.html

And all you could want to know about xenon headlamps AKA short arc metal halide HID
http://members.misty.com/don/d2.html


User currently offlineShaun3000 From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 445 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (11 years 2 months 16 hours ago) and read 1961 times:

I was flying into Caddo Mills during one of my solos before I got my private. I noticed a large piece of FOD on the runway, so I taxied over to it , got out, and pickied it up. The previous landing had been pretty hard and I thought I'd knocked someting off my airplane. (A 172. Dunno what I would have knocked off!) I get to it and pick it up, and realize that it's a runway light that had been broken off and kicked several feet away from it's original spot. I was quite amazed, especially because they were set in cement. I took it over to a guy towing gliders and he thanked me.

It was kind nifty, it had a little silver tag with an FAA certification on it. Other than that, nothing special.


User currently offlineAJ From Australia, joined Nov 1999, 2386 posts, RR: 24
Reply 11, posted (11 years 2 months 16 hours ago) and read 1940 times:

But what was used before xenon bulbs were available; I presume aircraft like the DC-8 didn't have those?

Aircraft of the vintage of the DC-8, 707, 727 and 747 originally flew with only fuselage beacons, strobes made available as a refit later on. Some airlines chose never to install strobes on these aircraft.


User currently offlineBR715-A1-30 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 1903 times:

I noticed that AirTran's DC9s have Beacons while the 717s have Xenon Strobes. Those beacons are dim compared to those strobes which will blind you if you look closely at them for too long.

Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic Aircraft Lightbulbs (Strobes Etc.)
Username:
No username? Sign up now!
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Tech/Ops related posts only!
  • Not Tech/Ops related? Use the other forums
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
  • DETAILED RULES
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)


Similar topics:More similar topics...
Aircraft Vs Race Cars: Temps, Wear And Tear, Etc posted Thu Nov 2 2006 07:34:20 by TimePilot
Wing Tip Strobes On Passenger Aircraft.. posted Wed Feb 11 2004 19:17:30 by AA777-200
What Aircraft Is This? posted Wed Jan 10 2007 17:17:56 by AirKas1
Aircraft Accident Mock Drill posted Sun Jan 7 2007 11:15:28 by HAWK21M
What Is The Best Corporate Aircraft Forum? posted Sat Jan 6 2007 05:56:01 by Turbonytro
Efficiency Of Aircraft Via SFC & SR posted Wed Jan 3 2007 16:23:18 by Corsair2
Aircraft Cleaning posted Wed Jan 3 2007 04:04:52 by ChewingPlastic
Maintanance On A Single Aircraft Of One Type? posted Tue Jan 2 2007 21:06:45 by Jetfan
Why Is There Still Aircraft Radio Splutter? posted Wed Dec 27 2006 15:50:44 by Jamesbuk
Kden - Aircraft Dispatch After Storm? posted Sun Dec 24 2006 00:20:54 by CDreier

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format