Investigation of the reliability of ceramic metal halide lamps

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Dr. Némethné Vidovszky Ágnes
Department of Electric Power Engineering

My thesis is strongly related to the research and development activities of GE Hungary Ltd. Ceramic metal halide lamps are a stable, dynamically iproving lightsource family. The reliability of the lamps is a key research area.

The failure modes of the lamps are tested at the so-called burning racks. In these devices, several lamps are burnt for thousands of hours, to test their reliability. Due to the long life of ceramic metal halide lamps the process is time consuming.

There was a strong demand to develop a method which can accelerate the life tests, but first I had to find a method for measuring a critical lamp parameter.

In my thesis I reviewed discharge physics basics, photometric properties as well as various high pressure discharge lamps. Only after that could I deal with this critical parameter. This attribute is the arc bending. Three different methods were developed for arc bending measurements.

With my preferred method I compared different ceramic designs. I studied the effect of arc bending and arc width on lamp life.

The adverse effect of arc bending can be an advantage in some cases. Accelerated life tests were performed by increasing the rate in wich the arc is bent. I designed and built a device suitable for accelerated life tests. This device can be used with any kind of discharge lamp.


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