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New to Fluorescent lighting.

This is a discussion on New to Fluorescent lighting. within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> One of the processes at work that causes fluorescent tubes to emit light is the production of plasma (ionized gas) in the tube. A ...

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New to Fluorescent lighting.
Old 11-04-2012, 07:53 PM   #11
 
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One of the processes at work that causes fluorescent tubes to emit light is the production of plasma (ionized gas) in the tube. A property of a plasma is that it conducts electricity and the greater the amount of electrical current the greater the ionization, which leads to greater conductivity. If a fluorescent bulb was plugged directly to the power supply it would be the case that an ever increasing amount of current (to the maximum available) would be sent to the bulb until a failure occurred. The ballast is what prevents this from happening; it allows a set amount of electricty to the bulb. So it is the ballast that ultimately determines the amount of light produced, not the bulb. The bulb really only controls the type of light emitted, not the amount.


A 20 watt T12, a 17 watt T8, and a 14 watt T5 (with the appropriate ballast) will produce roughly the same amount of light and any difference in 'brightness' to human eyes is a consequence of the quality of light not the quantity.

Last edited by Quantum; 11-04-2012 at 07:58 PM..
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:28 PM   #12
 
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You've changed the fixture, but I will still mention on the single T12/T8 (for the benefit of whomever) that this will be insufficient without specific tubes. I have a 24-inch T8 over my 29g, and I have to use Life-Glo tubes in order to keep the plants alive. The "Daylight" tubes just don't do it. ZooMed's UltraSun would also be OK, it is similar to the Life-Glo.

Chris, on your dual T5, does this have NO or HO tubes? If NO, that is roughly equivalent to T8 so at the high end of moderate light. If HO, that is very bright and you will have to keep the duration down and cover the tank surface with floating plants to avoid a tank of algae.

Byron.
Sorry like I said I'am still pretty new to fluorescents, but I don't no what you mean by NO or HO. I see nothing like that on the box that the fixture came in. The fixture is a Coralife T5 Dual lamp Fixture, with 1 6700K 18 watt light, 1 18 watt colormax light.
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:38 PM   #13
 
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T5 lighting comes in two types: T5 (sometimes referred to as Normal Output) and High Output. The wattage (of the ballast) is the difference. Yours with 18 watts per bulb is the non-HO type with 30 inch bulbs.
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:42 PM   #14
 
Ok I just did a fast search and see it's" normal output" and" high output". Well the box says nothing about HO, But it say's "high performance aquarium lighting". So I guess that's the same. So cut the hours down to say 8 hrs? And I already have water sprites floating in the tank and will get more.
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:45 PM   #15
 
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Originally Posted by Quantum View Post
T5 lighting comes in two types: T5 (sometimes referred to as Normal Output) and High Output. The wattage (of the ballast) is the difference. Yours with 18 watts per bulb is the non-HO type with 30 inch bulbs.
Quantum you must have put this as I was typing, anyways. You say this is not a high output fixture?
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:54 PM   #16
 
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30" T5HO is 31 watts, yours is not High Output, I have the single bulb version of this fixture and it is plenty of light for my needs

yours is obviously twice the amount of light and will require you to limit the photoperiod somewhat and having a good amount of floating plants is still a good idea, but it is not excessive and will be more manageable than HO
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:59 PM   #17
 
I'am glad to here it's not HO, and thanks for the help .
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