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The lighting revolution

        I have been reading a large amount about fluorescent tube in the
mail.   THis submission is to get a "new?" discussion going.  Even as I type
this lighting is changing.  I started my tanks using T12 tubes and recycled
ballasts.  Today I have changed two tanks to T8 lamps - one with an electronic
ballast for two F32 t* tubes and the other with 4 F32 T8 tubes.  I chose T8
ballasts for good light output and low energy consumption.  I have been
using 4200K and 5000K tubes and recently acquired Durotest vitalite plus in
T8's (5500k).  but there are many options avaiable.

        The future is upon us we now have the following available:

       1. new t5 tubes up to 40W and electronic ballasts readily available from
lighting stores.

        2. new TL5 tubes and electronic ballasts.  These lamps will enable
very bright tanks  (see size section below)  
        example - 1.15 m tube - 45" long   28w and approx 2900 lumens cri 85

        3. Electronic ballasts for small compact fluorescents like PL-s 13W
which are ideal for retrofitting those old incandescent hoods.

        4. T10 tubes for T12 ballasts having the same power consumption but
putting out 10% or more light.

        5. T8 tubes todays commercial replacement for T12 
        4' T8 tubes 32w   approx 2900 lumens cri up to 95

tube sizes are as follows

        T12  - 1 1/2" diameter tubes
        T10  - 1 1/4" diamenter tubes
        T8     1" diameter tubes
        t5      16mm or 1/2" diameter tubes
        supposed T3 tubes are also on the way


Wayne Mews