ED Lights Canada is a Canadian owned company located in Edmonton, Alberta. Our mission is to provide Canadians the highest quality energy-saving LED lighting products and accessories at an affordable price.
What do we see for 2018? An Increased Demand for LED Grow Lights
Another year, another chance to refocus energies and set to breaking conquering some goals. It’s no different in our world here at LED Lights Canada. With some changes in legislation coming into effect in our great country, we are preparing ourselves for growth. The plant kind. We see new laws and new trends of urban growing stimulating a sprouting market into a major branch of our very own business. No, we aren’t going to start farming but we are preparing for an increased demand for LED grow lights. We are starting with our own form of research and product testing.
What we consider to be important
We have a list of criteria for our LED grow lights to make sure you are getting the best mean for your green. First, it comes down to the proper certification for use in Canada. The big players we are familiar with are cETL, cUL and CSA. These certifications apply to line-voltage (120V AC) connections. Look for one of these to ensure you are covered under your insurance. Second is affordability. I will make it clear that quality is tied into that criterion. We want the average person to be able to explore using these grow lights within the sometimes limited space of their own home without spending a fortune. Regardless of the method, vertical, hydroponic, aquaponic, soil trays, etc., we want you to be able to find a reasonably priced, reliable, line-voltage certified product for small-scale projects or residential use.
Look for one of these certifications
Have we walked the walk… or should I say, potted the pot?
No, we haven’t gone that far, nor will we. To become a legal producer of marijuana there may be an application and approval process. According to some reports, legalization laws may still restrict growing for personal use. While others are predicting upwards of four plants per household. Considering these regulations and the movement to grow your own produce in an urban space, we are testing out LED grow lights. Early last year we adopted a role as a plant hospital, bringing in sickly house plants in for a turn of R&R. Our office plants were doing fairly well but we knew we could improve the conditions with a UV producing LED lamp.
The results are in
We set up a 50 watt full-spectrum LED grow light to see how our plants would respond. Our plants have become more like the trees they were intended. No quantifiable measures were collected but it appears that there are a few positive results: faster shoot production, larger leaf size and a plant that is now almost as tall as me.
Moreover, we are satisfied with the results. We consider this particular light a bit too bulky for home application. The hunt continues for a more versatile size of LED grow light. A standard medium based bulb would be great and a low profile fixture to mount closely to the plant would be even better. We are looking to start customizing our own linear fixtures.
For more insight on projections in grow light sales, we suggest this article.
Roadside safety could not be more important at this time of year. We Canadians know the drill. Say goodbye to patio season. Wake up to cold morning darkness. Fight to get your winter tires on before the first snowfall. Despite the beautiful yellow-orange hues, the pumpkin flavored everything, and the cozy wool sweaters that fall brings, Autumn also serves as a reminder that winter is drawing close. With the inevitable approaching, it is beneficial to prepare ahead of time for Canada’s harshest season. Do not get stranded in the cold waiting for hours after calling for roadside assistance to jump your dead battery. Click here to see a new battery car jumper that serves as a car jumper, emergency flashlight and a phone charger. This blog post will highlight not only this product but other key cautionary items to keep you safe on the road this winter.
Roadside Safety Must Haves For Your Trunk
For your safety, the following items should be in your vehicle as the transition starts from crisp fall days into chilly winter nights.
This is especially helpful if you have an older battery that works fine in the summer but often will struggle in cold winter temperatures . There are several different stand-alone technologies now that will boost your car. A Multi function car jumper and phone charger are great to have on hand in the off chance that you need it. The model we carry is incredibly simple to use. It is as straightforward as connecting the included jumper cables to your battery and starting the ignition. The reverse polarity protection, and the visible and audible indicators prevent any connection errors from occurring.
Winter and summer there should always be a blanket in your trunk. A suggestion here is a Mylar Blanket. They can serve as a heat barrier during hot months as well as extra warmth during the colder months. Mylar blankets are packed in a small bag and when used can reflect back 90% of your body heat. Mylar Blankets are available anywhere camping and sporting supplies are sold.
This is an important one, flashlights can be life savers. As amazing as technology is today, we all know it is not 100% reliable. In the case of an emergency, you should have a battery powered light source. The Powerlite Pro will provide you with a strong flashlight and will also work as an emergency light to provide safety should you get stuck on the road. On a full charge you can get up to 30 hours of light from the Powerlite Pro.
A few candles combined with common household items can provide an emergency heat source. In the event of power loss or battery failure, this can be quite useful. Find yourself a metal coffee tin, a few candles, and some
matches and store them in your vehicle this winter to act as a backup heat supply. It is simple, inexpensive, and highly effective. Keep matches and candles in separate plastic bags so they stay dry and always be careful with any open flame. And finally,
A car stuck in the snow is not fun. Less fun is having to use your hands to shovel yourself out of a snowy parking spot. Keep a small shovel in your car and you will be thankful, even if it only gets one use.
The roadside safety list could go on and on as there is no end to how prepared you can be. However, rest assured that you will be well equipped for the cold season by having these five items in your vehicle. Taking some time now to prepare could prove extremely valuable in the future. Stock up on these items to help allow your winter to run smoothly. The hope is that you will never have to use them!
3 years later Kelvin Temperature is still a mystery so we are reposting this article…
Customers come to our showroom to see our LED lights and one of the most common questions is about Kelvin temperature. We often hear that buying a led light for the first time is like learning a new language. As we all know the customer is always right and yes it is a bit like learning a new language. We would like to offer our simple explanation of what kelvin temperature is and why it is important in choosing the right LED light for you application.
Kelvin temperature refers to the light colour, not the light output. When having this discussion either in person or on the phone with a customer we will suggest an easy way to relate to kelvin rating on LEDs. Everyone can relate to the standard 60W incandescent bulb we have used for years. A standard 60W bulb has a kelvin temperature that ranges between 2700K and 3000K. It is a warm light and the most popular light colour for residential use. LED bulbs in this range are referred to as warm white.
The next step up the kelvin scale stops in the 4000K to 4500K range. Natural sunlight is approximately 4500K. This light colour is referred to as natural white or some manufacturers variation of this term. This colour could be called nature white or daylight. The light colour is whiter than warm white but not as white as the next step up which is cool white. Our customers and design clients tell us that colours are more accurately seen in this natural colour light since it is close to sunlight. Think about when you had to choose a paint colour or fabric and took the sample to the window of the store or outside to see what the “real” colour is. This can only be seen in sunlight or at 4500K.
The last choice is very interesting when you can see the 3 colours lit up side by side. Cool white is usually in the 5500K to 6500K range. Manufacturers who make their cool white at 5500K are trying to keep the light pure white. The blue in the colour spectrum starts at about 6000K so anything 6000K or higher will have a small amount of blue in the light.
What colour do I want?
Choosing the right light colour is strictly a personal choice. There is not a right or wrong colour. It is all about how the light colour fills the space and how you feel in this space. You should always remember that light reflects off of any surface it comes in contact with. The colour of these surfaces will also affect the light colour you see. LEDs offer a unique choice that allows you to change the kelvin temperature. These lights use a LED chip that will change colour temperature. We have posted a video that explains this if you would like to take a look here.
Learning about LED lights is like learning a new language. Understanding what it is will make your conversion to LEDs a great experience.
How LED Lighting Can Positively Impact Your Health
What if I told you that your post lunch coffee was no longer necessary AND you could maintain your youth by simply shining a light on your face? Crazy, right? Well this idea may not be so far fetched anymore. Here’s why: LEDs were once thought to be just a more expensive version of traditional light. Now they are a technology responsible for mood, productivity, and general health. This means we can all be awake and wrinkle free forever! Well maybe not forever, but LED lighting is taking the design world by storm. It has established itself not only as the standard for most renovations and new builds but as well as a therapeutic technology with several health benefits.
Blue Light Therapy
So let’s talk blue light first. Last week a friend of mine convinced me to try out a new gym. The first thing I noticed walking into the gym was the extremely (for lack of a better word) tacky blue light that was surrounding the entire weight area. Let me tell you, this is a total nightmare for an interior decorator. Completely distracted by this flaw, cutting my work out short seemed especially tempting. However, in that moment it dawned on me; there was probably more purpose to the blue light than strictly aesthetics. This is where my knowledge of light therapy kicked in. Blue LED lighting has been proven to be tremendously effective in the work place for increasing productivity among employees. Maybe the management at the gym was trying to utilize it in a similar fashion to help energize clients for their workouts. Blue Light Therapy has shown to improve mood and energy levels for its recipients. Essentially, blue light has the ability to suppress the photo receptors that produce melatonin. Melatonin is the hormone that is responsible for controlling your circadian rhythm. This means excess amounts of melatonin will cause your body to feel sleepy. In the same respect, blue light’s capacity to interfere with the production of melatonin will allow you to feel energized. It is no wonder using blue light therapy more often is becoming more popular in different industries today. This technology might just be the appropriate substitute for your afternoon coffee or in this case your new favorite pre-workout.
Red Light Therapy
Next up is red light. Red Light Therapy has an endless amount of perks. “You should try Red Light Therapy” is becoming a common phrase in daily conversations. If you have a problem, trying Red Light Therapy could be your solution. Weight loss, chronic pain relief and skin rejuvenation are just some of the benefits of Red Light Therapy. Even tanning salons now have red light beds that reverse skin damage from tanning. How ironic is that? If you are like me, you are probably wondering how this magical light that claims to have a plethora of health benefits really works? Well it really is as simple as it sounds.
Red light is capable of penetrating your skin by a depth of approximately 8-10 mm. The absorption of the wavelength kick starts the conversion from wavelength into cellular energy. This encourages the production of new cells and collagen. Having amazing effects on the skin, hair and the body in general. Red light therapy also helps with chronic pain management. This is done by stimulating mitochondrial function. Claims made by users of red light therapy show that where nothing else works, red light therapy has. It is becoming a frequently used tool in the complete healing of the entire body.
Essentially, LED technology has allowed us to cover all our bases. This means limiting coffee intake and eliminating the need for invasive procedures. Furthermore, reducing chronic pain and increasing productivity is obtainable all thanks to this light. The most amazing thing about all of this is that LEDs are such a new development. Their growth in the industry so far shows an abundance of potential for the future. With so many possibilities, it is exciting to see where this amazing technology can take us and how it will benefit future generations.
Photos courtesy of: Medical Daily (www.medicaldaily.com) and Red Light Therapy (www.redlighttherapy.lighttherapyoptions.com)
Jet lag is an adverse temporary physiological condition that occurs when multiple times zones have been crossed quickly by aircraft. Travel along the world meridians interrupts the circadian rhythm to which the body is subject. During an average 24 hour cycle, circadian rhythms can be regulated by external factors of light and temperature. A special part of the brain, the suprachiasmatic nucleus, SCN, determines the circadian clock rhythms in humans. Beginning in the eye, receptors and neurons initiate the SCN to control many of the body’s regulatory mechanisms. More specifically, it determines production of the opposing hormones, melatonin and cortisol. Most significantly, active absorption of sunlight influences whether melatonin is produced. When the sun starts to dip low in the sky, the pineal gland produces measurable amounts of melatonin which creates the urge to sleep. Therefore with great distance travelled in an eastern or western direction, the sleep-wake cycle previously held at home will not match that of the destination. Could the internal clock adjust faster to the new hours of day and night?
How does jet lag get us all bent out of shape?
Let’s take it from the beginning. You are travelling to another country, crossing many time zones, hoping to chase some life-altering experiences, and you come up against the brick wall of jet lag. How does jet lag manifest in the body? It ruins your willingness and ability to go out and immerse yourself in all there is to explore. In a new time zone you could be dealing with a range in severity of symptoms. Acclimation can require multiple days. From personal experience, sleep hijacked my body during an outing. I was splayed backwards over the backrest of a restaurant chair asleep for an hour while my friends had a casual conversation. For me, that was jet lag at its worst. Does the body have to suffer through the symptoms commonly associated with jet lag? In this modern fast-paced world a quick solution is often sought out. We cannot wait patiently for the old adage of ‘seek out afternoon light and avoid morning light when travelling east’ to set to work. So many have explored the use of LED lights to correct the circadian clock during travel.
Is there was an easier way to trick your brain?
Light shower LED Glasses
We are beginning to use artificial light to advance or delay the internal clock. For the German Skiing Association (DSV), glasses equipped with 20 LEDs have already been giving their athletes that competitive edge required after a long flight. After only 15 minutes of use, these glasses can increase focus and reaction time. An Osram biologist (the company that teamed up with DSV) went on to add that the glasses may be used to “reduce passengers’ jet lag by speeding up their adjustment to the time at their destination through targeted light simulation.” On another front, Dr Russell Foster , a professor of neuroscience, has been researching the use of adjustable colour temperature lighting to fight jet lag. Foster and his team created a phone app to facilitate adjusting to a new time zone by varying lighting colours. It tracks progress from starting point to final destination and suggests the best lighting to seek out. This has applications in an automated programme within hotel rooms as well. Simply enter the original location and the lights could be modified in preparation for the stay. In conclusion, LED glasses, light temperature app, hotel lighting, and natural light, used alone or in combination, can all provide a way to diminish jet lag.
Who should use LED light correction for jet lag?
Obviously, we all would like to use this to our advantage. There are some key groups of people who would greatly benefit from using lighting to ward off jet lag. Athletes, business people, artists, jet travellers, and flight crews would probably be the first to test the possibilities. Consistent exposure to new time zones can have quite an impact on resuming ordinary life in extraordinary circumstances.
As a type of sleep disorder, what could be the long-term effects of repetitive jet lag?
Those who travel on a regular basis all over the globe may adjust well to the ill affects of sleep deprivation but should consider the less apparent risks as well. Prof Charles Czeisler from Harvard Medical School touches on the long-term affects of missing out on sleep: “cardiovascular disease, metabolic diseases like obesity and diabetes, and cancer.” On that note, besides seeking out artificial sources of light, here is a commonly sought out list of proactive measures one can take. This is not a direct cause-and-effect situation. Travelling back-and-forth, for extended periods, doesn’t mean one will end up with a serious, medical condition. There are always other factors to consider. Do not shy away from exploring this planet’s greatest secrets and offerings. Please use this information to shine a bit of light on the situation.
Disclaimer: I am neither a registered medical practitioner nor a doctorate holder involved in any study of the physiological effects of circadian cycle sleep disorders. All opinions expressed are my own and do not reflect those of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
Light painting has been around for almost 130 years and doesn’t require any of the normal clean up from traditional painting. This art form has begun to resurface as the digital age becomes more popular. A new product, the Pixelstick , is a programmable LED “paintbrush” designed specially for this process. It creates simple single colour lines, complex rainbow coloured graphics, or photo-realistic faces and objects. LED lights lead the way in making light painting easy, versatile and precise.
What is it?
Let us back up for a minute to understand what light painting means across the ages. Ultimately it has revolved around using a source of light to create lines of an image while taking a long exposure shot with a camera. This involves a lot of trial and error as the light is manipulated to create the intended impact. As it applies to our current world, we have replaced the bulb, match, flashlight, or sparkler with our tiny light emitting diodes (LED) technology. We cover the operation and potential of the LED Pixelstick below.
The Art Explained
Light painting is accomplished in one of two ways. Primarily an artist uses a hand-held light source to draw an image in the air while a photographer co-part captures the scene. This is the most common method. The second and alternative way melds artist and photographer. The creator moves the camera instead to generate an abstract image. This requires a steady hand for the long exposure shot making this technique more difficult. In either method the night sky is often used as the canvas.
The LED Technology
The Pixelstick is a linear bar of 200 RGB LEDs. The stick has a SD card slot to upload a bitmap image file (BMP) for expression. Using bitmaps, the programming allows the user to create very fine detail since jumping activation of the LEDs is facilitated. This is much like pixels on a screen. However, the ‘screen’ becomes non-existent as the black aluminum casing and the operator disappear into the background. The small size and programmable nature of LEDs allows the freedom to change spatial location and colour with little to no restriction. This opens up the endless possibilities of the Pixelstick. Add in the potential of creating a video of light, and you can have hours of exploration at hand!
The Light Painting ‘effect’ on you
That’s exactly it! The effect it has on the subject. Maybe the effect is on you if you are striking a pose. Other times it is on an old abandoned firetruck in a field (see image included). The artist decides what to highlight. Their intent may be to create suspense, excitement or focus. This is where we find the theoretical simplicity of light painting. The familiar item, person or area is recreated. The artist creates interest for an item that may not have warranted a second glace. They reveal beauty in a moment of pause. Whatever the effect, it may be the light in front of the camera that decides the beauty, rather than the eye of the beholder.
Photos courtesy of Derick Rhodes, Duncan Frazier, and Stephen McGuigan (rainbow light with bridge backdrop, and what sparks our fire) and Darlene Hildebrandt (old abandoned firetruck).
Imagine having high-speed data transmitted by the light bulbs above your head. This is exactly what Harald Haas has created. He named it Light Fidelity, or LiFi. This communication system is created by adding a lamp driver microchip to an LED Light Bulb. Using Morse-code like pulses, the microchip can send secure signals from an LED bulb to a photoconductor and corresponding processor at a rate of 224 gigabits per second. Anthony Cuthbertson of IBTimes UK compares this to eighteen 1.5 GB movies being downloaded every second. In my mind, that covers The Godfather, Terminator, and the Halloween series being made available for my viewing pleasure EVERY second. Surely that solves the upcoming capacity problem.
What does the future of wireless communication look like? Will it be LiFi or will it stay WiFi?
LiFi offers a brand-new type of telecommunications connection but why do we need it? In this age of information a saturation point is fast approaching with so much technology on a limited number of cellular base stations. Different platforms for every day wireless communication are limited to operating over radio waves. Now a new platform that uses the visible light of the electromagnetic spectrum can solve the issue of bandwidth availability. In a world saturated with radio waves, LiFi is a welcome alternative. Using the light spectrum is harmless and offers ten thousand times more frequency than radio. Perhaps there will be less tripping and crossing of proverbial wires when not only the capacity, as mentioned before, but the range is opened wide. This is only the beginning. There are other benefits to this new communication as well.
A few advantages
Take a closer look at what it has to offer. How about increased security and capacity for information? Lifi is the unseen hero here as well. The signals remain securely between the walls in which the system is set. Many industries could highly benefit from this added security. With a much broader spectrum there is a benefit as well. It is all about exploiting huge data transfer with less interference. This is comparable to having an open ocean of downloading potential instead of just a highway. Speaking of oceans, even the US Navy is investing in LiFi for its use in seawater since underwater light travels better than radio waves. There is more to discuss on this application later.
Where does the impact become most clear?
Aside from the increased security of and capacity for sensitive information, LiFi also offers an element of safety. Airplane cabins, hospitals, or petrochemical plants could use it to work around the radio-sensitive electronic equipment commonly required. Monitoring a patients vitals or a hazardous work environment could be done without interfering with humans or equipment. Even the possibility of skipping over having to turn a mobile device to airplane mode is creeping into reality.
Some of the limitations
The benefits are obvious but what are the limitations? It has a very short transmission distance, about a third of WiFi requiring a signal amplifier for distances over 30 meters. This stands true for watery conditions as well. Underwater light cannot penetrate beyond a thousand meters let alone stand up to the darkness 200 meters of ocean creates. Under evaluation, benefits’ point to disadvantage and the double edge sword of LiFi is exposed. The walls of the space define where the system is active. This means once it is begun there is no continuing your 18 movie marathon download across the street.
Feasibility of LiFi increases when used to enhance WiFi
Ideally LiFi will work in unison with WiFi. The two systems are complimentary with their purpose. Installing a multi-channel receiver, with capabilities much like a Smart WiFi Toggler, would allow a switch to be made between each type of ‘fidelity’ when conditions require it. In concert, these technologies could be a game changer when our LED lights and routers play together to meet our needs in this wide open world of information.
For an introduction to this new technology, click here to enjoy Harald Haas widely popular TED Talks presentation. Further understanding and updates on available technology are presented by the company behind it all, pureLiFi.
Credit goes to the following articles on Lifi for providing clarification on this future in wireless communication.
We love when our friends and great customers pay a fun visit. Georgia and Sarah from LED Lights Canada are glad to have some fun with Eric, Steve and his great dog Griffen on a recent visit. Eric and Steve own @Home Electric in Sherwood Park and we would recommend them to anyone looking for a great company for your next reno project.
We work with many talented electricians and contractors and are always glad to provide a referral if you need someone for your next reno project. Feel free to call us at 780-800-0059 to discuss your needs and we will see if we can match you up with one of our trade members.
Send us your favorite pic and we’ll feature it on our LED big screen in our showroom and in our blog posts as our Customer Pic of the Week. Pictures could be of LED jobs you have done or just some fun pics of family or vacation fun. We try hard to get to know our customer and realize that we are all more than just work. Every 10 pics we receive will be posted and you will get to vote on your favorite. If your photo is chosen we will award a free gift from our Great Gifts section on our website.
I came across a really interesting video about circadian lighting using LEDs. Lots of studies going on about the use of light in the workplace and schools. One of the great things about LED lights is the ability to provide different light colours and it is fascinating how we react to different colours of light. We know that light reflects very differently off of different surfaces and now know the colour also has an effect on us as well. Our CCT (colour changing temperature) LED kitchen lights are very popular so you can get the right look with your kitchen colours and now there is yet another reason to consider how these lights will enhance your comfort.
Thank you to LUX Reviews for the great work you do to keep us all informed on the quick changing world of LED lighting. For those of us who have been involved in the world of LED lighting for years it is very exciting to have watched the juncture of LED technology and science. So many things in our environment effect the way we live and how we react to different stimulus. I think the Circadian Lighting experiment will show us yet another glimpse into our future.