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where i live, getting a dc compact flourescent lamp(cfl) is difficult. our electrical stores are only filled with ac cfls. i have been studying the circuit diagram of the ac cfl with the hope of converting it to dc but i am not making a head way, could please help?
- jeff (age 39)
I think that fluorescent lights intrinsically require ac. So probably the only way to use dc would be to get an inverter to convert your dc to ac. Then you could use a standard CFL.
Depending on what your application is, there may be a better solution. LED lights intrinsically run off dc. They're also highly efficient. So, even though they are still rather expensive, for you it might be cheapest in both the long and short run simply to get some LED lights that work with your dc source.
(published on 06/10/2011)
Follow-Up #1: dc-powered CFLs?
there are cfls that run on dc. the ac cfls ballast circuit diagram show that input ac is converted to dc thru a rectifier or diode bridge with a filter capacitor. what if i disable this unit cant my cfl run on dc?
- jeff (age 39)
Jeff- Many newer circuits:
1. First convert the ac supply to dc,
2. then convert the dc to a much higher frequency ac.
The lamp then runs on the high-frequency ac, which flickers less and and uses power more efficiently than using the standard 50 Hz or 60 Hz ac.
So yes, if you bypass stage (1) you should be able to run the CFL off dc. You need to figure out what is the dc output of the rectifier (stage 1) and use it as the input to the inverter (stage 2). In other words, the needed inverter is already built in to the standard circuit. Carefully measuring that output (remember these are high, potentially lethal voltages) while the rectifier is still connected to the circuit should work.
(published on 06/14/11)
Follow-up on this answer.