Stretch ceiling lighting
Stretch ceiling lighting is a very important factor and complements stretch ceilings.
In this article, we will focus on stretch ceiling lighting.
As you know, stretch ceiling is a translucent suspended ceiling that can be integrated with lighting and installation.
LED strips on stretch ceilings are usually installed in materials that have the highest percentage of light transmission, such as transparent or satin and printed ceilings.
LED lighting is used on printed ceilings for higher image resolution and ambient brightness.
LED light strips are available in different models in the market. In this section, we will discuss some examples of them.
LED strips are linear and filament and are available in different voltages such as 220V, 12V, 24V and..
LEDs are divided into monochrome (SMD) and colour (RGB).
SMD: SURFACE MOUNTED DEVICE
RGB: RED, GREEN, BLUE
LED: LIGHT EMITTING DIODE
A light emitting diode or LED is called a light emitting diode. It is an electronic component of the diode family.
Monochrome LEDs, like other diodes, have two anode and cathode pins.
LEDs of two or more colors have a common base, usually a cathode, and for each color, another base is usually an anode.
220V strip LEDs:
AC or 220V strip LEDs are a family of decorative lights that many professionals use because they do not require an adapter.
LED strip hose:
220V strip LEDs with 2 rectifier plugs are the first category of 220V LEDs on the market, known as hose LEDs, which are usually offered in 50 and 100 meter voltages.
These types of yarns can only be cut at one meter intervals.
A rectifier is usually used to connect this type of yarn to convert AC power into almost DC power. Due to the lack of coolant such as aluminum, the bed burns in the long run and a length of one meter of yarn fails. Also, in the long run, due to the heat generated, the color of the hose used on the tape changes and becomes cloudy which affects the quality of light.
220V PWM LED:
This type of LED is branched, and its power supply circuit is digital. It is located on the branch LED itself.
Due to the fact that the LEDs are placed on an aluminum substrate, the generated heat is dissipated, and they also have less energy loss. It seems to have a longer life than a hose.
Disadvantages of 220V LED strips:
- The LEDs are connected to each other, and this causes the rest of the LEDs to turn off if the LED burns.
- Since the circuit is directly connected to the city electricity, there is a possibility of body contact and electric shock. So, great care must be taken to distance oneself.
- Another disadvantage of 220V LEDs is that due to AC power fluctuations, long term usage causes eye pain and eventually headaches, which is less felt in 12V LEDs due to the DC current.
Advantages of 220V LED strips:
- Less heat is produced. Electricity and energy consumption is also reduced.
- It will be economical to use, due to the lack of power and adapter.
- If you need to install in a large area, you will connect the LED wires to each other with less worry about voltage drop and increase in direct wiring costs.
One of the most widely used lights in stretch ceilings due to their advantages, are 12-volt LEDs.
12V branch LED is commonly used in lighting, professional and decorative applications.
This type of LED has a long life and is reasonably priced due to its large volume.
It should be noted that compared to 220V LEDs requires more work and more peripherals.
Branch LEDs are commonly referred to as aluminum or fiberboard boards equipped with SMD LEDs.
It is almost inflexible and available in the usual widths of 5 mm and 10 mm.
The thickness of these branched LEDs is 2 mm. Also, their length is 100 cm.
The density of branch LEDs (number of LEDs per meter) is 72, and in special cases it reaches 144.
14V branch LEDs consist of combinations of several sets of 3 series LEDs with one resistor.
These three groups are parallel to each other and can be cut at intervals of all three LEDs.
These LEDs with aluminum board dissipate heat more easily and have a longer usage span.
They can also be installed inside aluminum profiles to dissipate heat more efficiently.
Branch LEDs are classified based on characteristics such as chip size, power consumption and density.
The branch size of the chip 8520 and 7020 and indicates the size of the diode in length and width.
For example, the 5630 chip is 5.6 mm by 3 mm. 12V SMDs are available in sunny, moonlit and natural colors.
Disadvantages of 12V LEDs:
- Due to the parallelism of all three LEDs with each other, the current passing through the PCB is increased. Since the thickness of the current conducting surface on the circuit is very low, it causes a drop in current, followed by a drop in light along the path. Of course, this issue is not noticeable in low volumes.
- Some of these LEDs have a very high current that in addition to more light, produce a lot of heat that must be disposed of aluminum coolers (heatsink).
Otherwise there is the possibility of surface burn in contact with them and reduces the life of the LED.
Advantages of 12 volt LEDs:
- Due to high production and existence of cheap parts, LEDs are the most economical, which are priced according to the size of the chip, its quality and the density of SMD LEDs.
- Since all three LEDs are in series with each other and finally parallel, you can cut the PCB at the junction and use the two parts separately.
Tape or string LED: (RGB)
Includes a number of LED SMD chips that are mounted in a row on a flexible electrical circuit.
It often has a chip on the back of the strip to illuminate the ceiling and interior spaces on a variety of surfaces.
Water-resistant yarns are coated with epoxy adhesive and are protected from direct contact.
There are strip LEDs in different colors, which in the seven-color (RGB) model, with the help of the relevant driver and controller, the desired settings for the light colors can be applied.
The input power of this LED is supplied by the contour on both sides of it with the help of RGB remote control driver and 12V adapter.
In each roll, the density of 30, 60 and 120 LEDs per meter of length and with the ability to cut every 5 cm and working voltage of 12 and 220 is marketed.
The 12-volt RGB yarn is a 5-meter loop and can produce a brightness of 330 lumens per meter.
This amount of light is equivalent to the brightness of a 30-watt incandescent lamp.
The most widely used RGB threads are with the 5050 chips, which consumes 1 amp per meter.
It consists of three colors: red, green, and blue (which can be combined with the remote control).
How to make LED strips:
Before we get into how LED strips work on stretch ceilings, let’s take a look at how LEDs are connected and how they light up:
12V branch LED: (SMD)
We need an adapter or transformer to start and turn on the LED.
The function of the adapter is to convert 220V AC to 12V DC.
Adapters are classified based on amps and current intensity.
Transformers are used in 2, 5, 10, 15, 20 and 30 amp amps.
Select the type of transformer required based on the number of SMDs and the total amount of amps consumed.
Note that the 30-amp transformer has a cooling fan that, in addition to cooling it and extending its lifespan, also has noise. Therefore, use this transformer in commercial and crowded environments where the sound of the fan does not disturb.
The transformer has N input or phase and zero and positive and negative output.
The input of the transformer is connected to 220 city electricity and the output of the transformer is connected to SMD.
Observance of technical and safety principles in connecting and setting up SMD and transformers is mandatory.
Before contacting the 220V power supply, make sure that the current inside the wires is cut off, or use safety tools such as gloves and a phase meter.
Do not connect the 220V power supply to a separate transformer output as this will cause the transformer to burn out.
This type of smd has more powerful chipsets but uses fewer special lenses which increases the radiation angle, and makes the light more diffused and reaches the surface seamlessly.
One of the lighting problems in stretch ceilings is shading.
In some cases, with non-standard angles of light radiation, installation or poor substructure, we see shadows in the stretch ceiling lighting. Lens SMDs with very good and standard radiation angles have largely solved shadow problems.
Advantages of using lensed SMDs:
– Lighting and lighting is completely uniform and soft without blur, due to high radiation angle
Energy is saved (increased efficiency), due to maximum power consumption of 3 watts
– Reduction of heat generated
Installation of LEDs in stretch ceilings:
Installing LEDs in stretch ceilings requires observing the following rules and points:
- The transformer amps used must be greater than the total amps of the LEDs. (1/5 times)
Trans Ampere> LED Amps
Trans ampere = 1/5. Amps
- The wires used in connecting the LEDs play an important role.
The amount of current passing through the wires depends on the thickness of the wires, or their cross section as well as the length of the wire.
By increasing the cross section of the wire, more current can be applied to it, passed through and vice versa.
As the length of the wire increases, the resistance increases and less current can be passed through the wire.
Temperature also affects the amount of current flowing through the wire.
As the temperature increases, the resistance decreases. As the temperature decreases, the resistance increases.
So at high temperatures, less current can be passed through the wire.
If this rule is not followed, the wire will heat up and cause a fire.
For example: SMDs must be connected in parallel.
If the SMDs are connected by a 1.5 mm wire, we are only allowed to connect 4 SMDs.
So all 6 SMDs can be connected to the transformer with a length of 5 meters with a 1.5 mm square wire.
Also, with 2.5 mm square wire, 6 SMD with a length of 5 meters can be connected to the transformer in parallel.
- Another important rule when installing SMDs in stretch ceilings is the distance of SMDs from each other, and their distance from the stretch ceiling.
X: The distance between the SMDs
h: The distance of the SMDs from the elastic ceiling
The distance of the SMDs from each other should be about 20% less than the distance of the SMDs from the elastic ceiling.
For example, if h is equal to 20 cm, the distance between the SMDs should be 16 cm. This rule applies to translucent ceilings and printed ceilings with white background. It can be x≤h on ceilings with darker designs and prints.
Note that h should be between 15 and 25 by default.
If the distance h is short, the distance x should also be relatively small, which will increase the SMDs and also increase the light and the energy consumption.
The distance between the first SMD and the last SMD from the wall should be x / 2.
By not following this rule, we will face narrow, black lines as well as uneven lighting.
Things to keep in mind when SMD lighting:
Before starting the lighting, be sure to do the substructure and make sure that dust does not fall on the ceiling in the future. (Cover the seams, insulate the main ceiling, etc).
No foreign objects should be placed between the SMDs and the stretch ceiling. (This creates a shadow)
The LEDs should be installed perfectly flat on the ceiling and on top of the stretch ceiling, according to the technical principles, and make sure that their connection is tight.
The connection of SMDs is done by a special network clamp by wire or screw.
The connection of SMDs to the main ceiling and the top of the stretch ceiling depends on the substructure.
Avoid connecting SMDs with separate adhesive because as time passes and the SMDs heat up, the durability of the adhesive disappears and separates from the main ceilings.
The location of transformers and adapters should be outside the elastic ceiling if possible, which is difficult to access if needed.
Also, the distance between the transformers and the LEDs should be as short as possible.
No wires should be hung from the ceiling and we fasten them with a special fastener.
SMDs used in stretch ceilings must be of the same brand and type so that the lighting is done in uniform.
Transformers and adapters usually have a voltage adjusting screw.
By increasing and decreasing the voltage, the amount of LED exposure can be adjusted to some extent.
Also, by reducing the voltage, the life of the transformer can be increased, and the overheating of the transformer and LEDs can be reduced.
The arrangement of the LEDs should all be in one direction.
Installation of stretch ceiling should be done after the final approval of Kafrma and complete lighting test.
How to set up and install RGB tapes
12V RGB string strips, like LED strips, require an adapter.
In addition to the adapter and transformer, when installing RGB, we use a device called a driver or controller.
The task of the device is to control the colour driver by remote and adjust the type of effect and RGB color.
The driver is placed between the adapter and the RGB. The driver input is connected to the transformer output and the driver output is connected to the RGB.
RGBs are available in 5 meter rolls.
The beginning and end of the RGB have sockets. They are connected in series.
Installing RGB on stretch ceilings follows LED rules.
In RGB, the driver amp is also important and should be greater than the total RGB amp.
Multiple transformers should be used in large locations where more RGB length is used.
As the RGB length increases, the amount of driver amps must also increase.
To increase the driver amp, the number cannot be increased and another device must be used to boost the driver.
This device is called an LED amplifier.