Underground mining LED strip lighting: five imperatives
LED strip lighting has fundamentally changed how we illuminate harsh and hazardous underground mining environments. Technology is evolving rapidly in this space, as new solutions continue to drive improvements in quality, safety, installation and maintenance.
Here’s our top 5 imperatives of what to look for when selecting or upgrading your industrial LED strip lighting.
1.Not all LEDs are created equally
Product design varies greatly in LED lighting so buying from a reputable partner is vital. Make sure your LED strip lights are industrial-grade quality and approved for use in underground mines.
Check your certifications to ensure your LED strip lights have been independently tested, meet the highest local and international safety standards and are fully certified to perform in harsh and hazardous conditions.
For example, Mineglow offers the only ATEX certified LED strip light available for coal mines.
Look for LEDs that have been rigorously tested for durability and are waterproof (IP 67), fire retardant and self-extinguishing, impact-resistant and shock-resistant. Premium-quality solutions are also blast resistant, explosion-proof (IECEX certified) and can withstand 70kg of pulling power.
Ensure that dust and dirt retardant properties come as standard for all your LED strip lighting.
2. Lumens and lifespan
Compared with early LED designs, today’s best LED strip lights offer higher lumen outputs per watt and increased lifespans. High-quality, LED strip lights do not fail like fluorescent lighting, they use significantly less electricity and result in immediate and ongoing savings in running costs.
Eliminating the risk of blackouts, LED light output gradually decreases over time. This allows for a regular maintenance schedule and replacement prior to failure for greater consistency of lighting, improved peace of mind and safety for workers underground.
Mineglow LED strip lighting systems use specialised components to withstand continuous operation. Compared to other solutions, Mineglow LEDs function at optimal efficiency for long periods of time, even in the most challenging environments. You can expect high-quality, industrial-grade LED solutions to deliver a lifespan of five to ten years with only a 20 to 30 percent loss of luminescence during this period, and a five-year warranty period.
3. Clear and simple
Expect top-quality industrial LED strip lighting systems to provide bright, clear illumination for underground mines at half the wattage and a fraction of the installation time and cost of traditional lighting systems.
High-quality industrial-grade LED strip lighting should deliver a complete flood of lighting from floor to ceiling to create daylight working conditions. Constant luminescence is important to eliminate spots and reduce threats of glare and blinding, to reduce preventable incidents and improve efficiency.
Traditional fluorescent lighting creates a wide and broad dispersion of light which generates spill light that can contribute to reflection or glare off PPE cap shields. In comparison, Mineglow LED Strip lighting is directional where 100 per cent of the light emission from the LEDs is directed onto the task area, maximising lighting efficiency, minimising spill and reducing the instances of glare.
The white light emissions from a Mineglow LED strip lighting source also allows for a more precise colour recognition when compared to that of fluorescent lighting. This provides a strong contrast to black backgrounds and a high perception of illuminance.
Always choose industrial-grade LED strip lighting that’s purpose-built for maximum illumination and visibility, fast deployment and zero maintenance.
4. End-to-end power supply
The quality of your power supply is critical to the performance of LED light. Built-in power redundancy is a unique feature that allows for the connection of a power supply at both ends of the strip lighting. This essentially doubles the rated length and allows the lighting to continue to operate even if completely severed, or if one of the power supply fails.
Choose LED strip lighting that can be manufactured to suit your power specifications using 24, 36, 48-Volt AC or DC power. Mineglow LED power controllers convert the input voltage from 110/240 VAC into a lower voltage of 12, 24 or 36 VDC to energise the LEDs. The power controllers have a variable input feature which means it can manage any voltage from 85 to 265VAC, making it suitable for applications worldwide.
5. Know your installation environment
Understanding your installation environment is also critical to selecting the right LED strip lights. With a wide array of standard, long range and specialist product lines and colours now available, it’s important to select the right solution designed for your operating environment, unique risks and hazards.
For example, there is strong demand for customised lengths and longer LED strip run lengths that support long range applications such as tunnelling and conveyor operations. Mineglow strips can be customised for any length and offer the longest continual run lengths in the LED strip market – including the only LED light strip that can be run for continuous lengths up to 168 metres. Robust, reliable power controllers placed at key intervals prevent voltage drop and ensure consistency of brightness along the strip.
Mineglow’s emergency LED pulse system is a recent innovation that guides underground workers to safety in emergency evacuations. Available in multiple colours, the chasing system suits different applications and risk zones, offering high sight impact, visibility and reliability when it matters most.
The LED strip lighting market is continually improving as advances in technology deliver new and innovative solutions in mine rescue, self-escape and emergency lighting, while enhancing overall product life, length and colour. Expect to see more innovation from LED market leaders to further improve underground safety, productivity and efficiency.
Lighting the way for zero harm
Mineglow transforms high-risk industrial work environments into brighter, safer and more productive places to work, while reducing operating costs. Specialising in high quality, high performance solutions for the world’s most toughest environments – underground, inland and offshore – Mineglow’s brand promise is simple: Maximum visibility and protection for zero harm.
Mineglow introduced the world’s first industrial-grade LED strip lighting solution, purpose-built for hazardous mining environments, in 2014. Meeting the growing need for robust, energy-efficient lighting alternatives in other harsh industrial sectors, Mineglow has expanded its presence with the widest range of tailor-made, premium-quality LED strip light solutions for mining and energy, tunnelling, construction, marine ports and conveyors.
Mineglow is the world’s largest distributor of x-Glo LED strip lighting.