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Re: [APD] use a fan on my Compact Fluorescent?

Fluorescent lamp life and brightness is a function a host
of factors including the mercury ocntent, internal bulb
pressure, gas contnent, phosphors, voltage, etc. . .
Leaving all that aside, they are generally designed to
operate optimally (which is a balance between brightness
and longevitiy) at a temp of roughly 120 degrees F. But
they are very forgiving.

I use Fluorescent lamps in my garage/woodshop during the
freexing winter and during the worst days of the NJ summer
and they always give plenty of light.

At cooler temps, the mercury in the bulb doesn't vaporize
as well and the bulb doesn't carry the arc of electricty as
well. So cooler tends to mak the bulbs dimmer. More heat
helps but only up to a point, around 140-160 degrees F.
Soemwhere in that range you should expect any additional
brightness but you will still realize shorter life as the
operating temp goes up.

Ballast temp, by itself doesn't mean anything in terms of
bulb performance -- all that matters for bulb performance
is the ballast output energy, not how much energy is given
off as heat.

The diffs in brightness for most flo bulbs bulbs in cool
rooms or "hot" lamps are negligible if you're using the
bulb on an aquarium in a heat controlled house and you are
not overdriving the bulb (not using a ballast designed only
for a much larger bulb). The biggest reason for a fan on
flo lamps is to move the heat away from the aquarium. 
Before considering a fan, first see if aquarium
temperatures get too high during the warmer days. If not,
then I wouldn't worry about it -- you'll probably grow
tired of the bulb long before it burns out ;-)

Scott H.
--- "Byron J. Yu" <sixty9 at gmail_com> wrote:

> Hi,
> . . .I've noticed that
> coralife's
> 65 watt, single bulb unit doesn't come with a fan, so i
> was wondering
> if using the fans was needed.
> I know the cooler the ballast runs, the brighter and
> longer the light
> lasts. But i'm wondering if there is an operating temp,
> meaning is it
> always brighter and longer the cooler it runs? or is
> there a certain
> temp where the advantages stop.

Plant your feet in Washington, D.C. and touch the moon -- at the National Air & Space Museum. 
And learn the art of aquascaping Senske style at AGA2K4. 

Speakers, field trip, Ray "Kingfish" Lucas, and more. . .
The Annual AGA Convention, 2004, November 12-14.

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