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Vladex
Topic Author
Posts: 474
Joined: Sat Oct 26, 2013 2:44 pm

Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Tue Aug 25, 2020 4:26 pm

Maybe I just haven't been to a lot of them but the ones I have they all have these old metal halide lights which give dirty light is the best way I can put it and disperse it everywhere where it's not needed such as upwards.I live next to YYZ and when I look up it looks like a bonfire in the sky with those orange lights. Now a lot of places are going to LED lights which is understandable but I would think airports would be the first to go there given that visibility is such a prevailing issue and LED lights give off clean and white light that is more often than not pleasing to the eye.

LED's are easy to install , they only point unidirectional downward thus eliminating light pollution and of course they are more efficient , easier to maintain and are now more affordable. I see them a lot now at supermarket parking lots so I am just wandering when will they show up at airports . I realize that this is a conservative industry that eschew changes and they need lots of testing far beyond a parking lot light but it's time.
 
ILikeTrains
Posts: 59
Joined: Tue Dec 24, 2019 3:18 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Tue Aug 25, 2020 4:29 pm

Not sure if this is the reason, but LED lights don’t get warm. I remember when Chicago started using LEDs for stoplights, and during winter storms, the lights would become obscured by snow, and lacked the heat of the older bulbs to melt away the snow.

Just a thought, I would guess that could be part of it.
 
Sokes
Posts: 1809
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Tue Aug 25, 2020 4:40 pm

If it's yellow light it's probably from sodium low pressure bulbs.
I believe gold smiths use this light as it helps with seeing detail. The human eye is quite sensitive to the wavelength. They are moreover quite economical. No idea if LEDs are more economical. I assume so.

One can't differentiate colors well, but why would this be important?

A friend of mine sells fridges. He has very bright LED lamps. They make the fridges look attractive. However he says a full day in this light can cause headaches.

I love yellow street lamps. Pitty that they get replaced with LEDs.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Vladex
Topic Author
Posts: 474
Joined: Sat Oct 26, 2013 2:44 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Tue Aug 25, 2020 6:48 pm

ILikeTrains wrote:
Not sure if this is the reason, but LED lights don’t get warm. I remember when Chicago started using LEDs for stoplights, and during winter storms, the lights would become obscured by snow, and lacked the heat of the older bulbs to melt away the snow.

Just a thought, I would guess that could be part of it.


They do get warm somewhat and I am sure airport lights should be powerful. I mean a good LED floodlight sold on Amazon is still 300 Watts which probably gets warm enough and besides most led lights point downwards. I just got LED lights installed around my appartment building in Toronto so snow and cold is not that problematic for these lights.
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 6237
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Tue Aug 25, 2020 7:08 pm

Awful, EVS systems on planes need heat differentials, no diff, no EVS. Not an airline problem. Nothing like 8 miles inbound on the ILS at Delhi with 550m of reported viz, “EVS Visual, runway in sight”.
 
mxaxai
Posts: 1977
Joined: Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:29 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Tue Aug 25, 2020 7:26 pm

They are being used, for example STR (EDDS) replaced the entire runway and taxiway lighting with LED's. Many other German airports (MUC, FRA, HAJ just to name a few) have done so as well (at least partially), since the electricity and maintenance savings easily exceed the installation costs.
Here's an example during the conversion at MUC:
Image
https://www.airportzentrale.de/flughafe ... tet/57729/
 
Okie
Posts: 4156
Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2003 11:30 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Tue Aug 25, 2020 7:29 pm

Vladex wrote:
Maybe I just haven't been to a lot of them but the ones I have they all have these old metal halide lights which give dirty light is the best way I can put it and disperse it everywhere where it's not needed such as upwards.I live next to YYZ and when I look up it looks like a bonfire in the sky with those orange lights. Now a lot of places are going to LED lights which is understandable but I would think airports would be the first to go there given that visibility is such a prevailing issue and LED lights give off clean and white light that is more often than not pleasing to the eye.


$$$$$$$$ simple.

400w metal halide bulb <$10, 1000w metal halide <$20, and 1000w hp sodium <$25. 40ft Bucket Truck <$70 per hour w/ apprentice @ $40 per hour with benefits.
Should be able to handle at least 4 fixtures per hour on re-lamp.

There are "corn" replacement LED bulbs but they start at about the cost of an LED fixture.

This in an indirect expense.

Generally a customer wait until near the life cycle of their last replacement cycle for a particular group of fixtures and go for a capital expense and replace to LED fixtures as the cost continues to comes down.

I won't get into Div 1 and Div 2 fixtures but they left the heavy metals behind close to a decade ago and shifted to LED because of safety issues.

Okie
 
Sokes
Posts: 1809
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Thu Aug 27, 2020 3:05 pm

@mxaxai:
Thanks for posting this picture

What light so you guys prefer, white or yellow?
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Sokes
Posts: 1809
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Thu Aug 27, 2020 3:09 pm

Okie wrote:
1000w metal halide <$20, and
1000w hp sodium <$25.

Is the yellow light from the picture from high pressure or low pressure lamps?
How powerful can one make low pressure?
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Okie
Posts: 4156
Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2003 11:30 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Thu Aug 27, 2020 4:35 pm

Sokes wrote:
Okie wrote:
1000w metal halide <$20, and
1000w hp sodium <$25.

Is the yellow light from the picture from high pressure or low pressure lamps?
How powerful can one make low pressure?


From High Pressure from the picture.

About the only LP sodium are seriously yellow and about the only time I have seen the Low Pressure is typically a 70w for homeowner/DIY type installs.
I have never inquired but I am not even sure if any of wholesale suppliers that I use would even stock bulbs or fixtures for LPS.

Okie
 
FriscoHeavy
Posts: 1791
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 4:31 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Thu Aug 27, 2020 4:44 pm

Sokes wrote:
@mxaxai:
Thanks for posting this picture

What light so you guys prefer, white or yellow?


Yuck, why would you choose dingy, yellow looking street lamp bulbs. Hideous. Thank God our town has clean, 'white' lighting. I'm sure it's LED, but I don't care about that. I want a clean and bright look, not disgusting and dull yellow lighting. It doesn't matter how bright or LED you make a yellow bulb, it will always pail in comparison to clean, bright, white lighting.
Whatever
 
Sokes
Posts: 1809
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Thu Aug 27, 2020 5:16 pm

Okie wrote:
Sokes wrote:
Is the yellow light from the picture from high pressure or low pressure lamps?

From High Pressure from the picture.
Okie

Thanks.
I stand corrected.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
JayinKitsap
Posts: 2253
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2005 9:55 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Fri Aug 28, 2020 9:13 am

Low pressure sodium is very efficient - going by memory here - Incandescent is a 10, florescent is a 40, High Pressure Sodium 70 - the yellow color at the airport, Metal Halide - 60, new LED 80 in any of the colors, and Low Pressure Sodium - 160. However, LPS only emits two ungodly yellow splashes of the Sodium atom - they are usually in a 4' long tube, actually pretty rare.

LED is slowly replacing all of the others. For streetlights, the utility replaces the whole fixture when the bulb burns out, the LED fixture is expected to last 10 years, the old fixture just 5 or 6. The new head goes on about as fast as replacing the bulb, for a 180W LED unit they are about $200 in bulk, the 2 man crew with the boom truck costs more in time than the fixture. The energy savings are nice but small potatoes compared to the changeout cost, why the old fixtures stay around.
 
flipdewaf
Posts: 3641
Joined: Thu Jul 20, 2006 6:28 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Fri Aug 28, 2020 10:37 am

Sokes wrote:
If it's yellow light it's probably from sodium low pressure bulbs.
I believe gold smiths use this light as it helps with seeing detail. The human eye is quite sensitive to the wavelength.


I remember from the depths of the back of my head that there is some issues with the replacement of train headlamps with LED in that whilst it all seems rosy on paper regarding brightness and coverage etc the reduced bandwidth is an issue for the driver picking up details and depth perception. The use of LEDs is certainly a no go for many IR detection systems that require illumination and halogens are still the go to because of the consistency of each bulb over its life, once calibrated its very reliable but needs calibrating for each bulb replacement, this is very obvious when doing hyper-spectral work.

Fred
Image
 
Sokes
Posts: 1809
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Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Fri Aug 28, 2020 3:05 pm

Okie wrote:
I have never inquired but I am not even sure if any of wholesale suppliers that I use would even stock bulbs or fixtures for LPS.

Okie

Probably not, as worldwide manufacturing stopped in 2019.
There is a picture in Wikipedia of a red and a black car under a sodium low pressure lamp. Both look black.
After seeing this picture I suspect that I have never even seen one.
So my earlier post claiming it to be sodium low pressure is rubbish.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Sokes
Posts: 1809
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Fri Aug 28, 2020 4:04 pm

Sodium high pressure gets a little different spektrum already by pressure alone. However for the shorter wavelengths it requires some mercury. I guess that's why they are replaced.

A goldsmith needs perception of small detail.
A train driver needs depths of focus.

From Google, a 1970s/ 1970s source:
-In moist air different wavelengths scatter. The lamp makes a halo. SLP lamps have one wavelength, they don't make halos.
-SLP light is invisible to insects, SHP is less attractive to insects.
-Headlight glare depends on ambient light. As sodium lamps make a lot of light headlight glare is reduced.
-SLP light reflects well from asphalt. Therefore one can see long distances. Places in the shadow of a lamp are less dark.
-50% of SLP lamps will fail after 18.000 hours,
50% of SHP lamps will fail after 30-48.000
hours.
-SLP have more scattered light than SHP which gives a feeling of security in residential areas.
-SLP penetrates fog and eliminates glare in rain.

Goa fixed LED street lamps. They are a nuisance when the road is wet.
But I assume that will depend on the LED.
Anybody agrees/ disagrees about LED lamp reflection being disagreeable on wet road?

LED lamps don't like high temperature. I wonder what will be their life in the subtropics.

I believe the short life of SLP makes it unattractive for street lightning purpose.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
flipdewaf
Posts: 3641
Joined: Thu Jul 20, 2006 6:28 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Sun Aug 30, 2020 11:16 am

Sokes wrote:


LED lamps don't like high temperature. I wonder what will be their life in the subtropics.


About 5 years ago I designed (commissioned and managed) a modular, composite mechanical and electrical distribution system, it carried 10bar steam, condense return, compressed air, hot water, cold water, chilled water, air extraction ducting and integrated led panel lighting. Everything was clad in stainless and then filled with polyisosyanurate (Kingspan).

With both hot and cold flows and designed to be put in a food factory (humid and potentially hot like tropical environments) one of the big challenges was handling the heat output from the led drovers and the backs of the panels, we had to redesign the area where the lights were placed the lighting to allow sufficient airflow for the heat sinks. Luckily in my job it’s expected to get it wrong quite often.


Fred


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Image
 
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JBo
Posts: 1769
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Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Fri Sep 04, 2020 4:06 pm

Airfield lighting (taxiway/runway edge and centerline lighting, as well as wayfinding signage, is being upgraded to LED in many areas, usually in conjunction with other airfield improvement projects.

I don't know offhand if LED is used yet for runway edge lighting, but it's definitely used for taxiways - the blue is much brighter and vibrant. The ones at my local airport are built to include heat sinks so they'll still generate enough heat to melt snow/ice off of them in the winter.

I also don't know if LEDs are used yet for VASI/PAPI lighting, but I've seen LED REIL lights.
I'd take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance any day.
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 6237
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Fri Sep 04, 2020 9:04 pm

Hopefully, the presence of LED lighting will be noted on charts so crews having EVS capability can plan on not getting full use of it.
 
LCDFlight
Posts: 614
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2020 9:22 pm

Re: Why aren't airports upgrading to LED ligths?

Sat Sep 05, 2020 4:47 pm

Sokes wrote:
@mxaxai:
Thanks for posting this picture

What light so you guys prefer, white or yellow?


Not a pilot, but I don't really like light that is too "warm" (orange) or too "cool" (blue). Something in between.

Image

LED fixtures may need heating elements (or snow shields) in snowy environments for safety. Most of us have seen LED traffic lights snowed up. It becomes a safety issue.

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