New Graphite Foam Cooling Technique Doubles LED Longevity
Company Licenses Graphite Foam LED Technology to LED North America
A new graphite foam cooling system developed at the ORNL, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, promises to double the life cycle of LED lighting fixtures, thus enabling LED lighting components to have significantly extended time between replacements.
The innovative graphite foam wicks heat away from the LED lighting fixture because of a skeletal design that is lightly packed, thus reducing the operating temperature and doubling the longevity of the LED lighting components. The difference of ten degrees in cooling is a significant breakthrough, and has been licensed to LED North America. The new graphite foam system will be integrated into that company’s street lamps and used in industrial, commercial and government applications.
In contrast to the current technology, in which LED lighting components are cooled with heat sinks or metal fins that increase surface area and cooling capacity, the new graphite foam provides a higher thermal conductivity, a lower weight, and better design capacity and machinability, according to ORNL. The graphite foam is also cost-effective due to the amount of air pockets.
The graphite foam system is anticipated to save users of large-scale LED lighting systems, such as municipalities, millions of dollars in both maintenance and replacement costs each year.