Just off the CNC - Update: It's Alve!

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PilotPTK
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okwchin wrote:

OMG this thing is seriously hawt!.

I can really really see the design and thought that has gone into this design!, something that is very rarely seen these days. I have many ideas in my head of what I want to be achieving, but my gosh I don't have anywhere near your ability!, such as Hand soldering QFN packages (OMG!), enough said!

I don't have a distinct need for one, but my gosh, if you do down the line consider putting another one together, I'm very much interested! Even if its just to appreciate the engineering and thought that has gone into this!

Haha.. Hawt Smile  I like that Smile

Thanks very much - your comments and compliments are very much appreciated.  There has definately been a lot of thought put into this thing - and thus far, it's been a lot of fun.  I never get the chance to design something for myself, and I finally decided it was time.

Surprisingly, soldering qfn's by hand isn't really that 'difficult' - it's just time consuming and tedious.  Maybe I'll post a video of how to do it some day - Most people could do it, it just takes a bit of patience.

If I ever decide to build more - I'll make sure to drop you a note.

Thanks again for the comments!

PPtk

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edc
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This is like a work of art. I can't wait to see it in action.

 

http://i1193.photobucket.com/albums

okwchin
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And if the optics are removable still (appears they should be), then you have a customisable beam pattern too!

"like everyone else - I’m looking for my next “last” flashlight" -  ohnonothimagain

PilotPTK
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okwchin wrote:

And if the optics are removable still (appears they should be), then you have a customisable beam pattern too!

Yes, the optics can easily be switched even after the whole thing is fully assembled.  Remove the front bezel and pop the optics right out.

To my knowledge, the only thing that will fit my emitter arrangement is the CUTE-3 Optics from LEDiL, so I'm stuck with those, but I could Use Wide, Medium and Narrow is different ratios.

PPtk

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mattthemuppet
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PilotPTK wrote:

I'm going to be using three different optics.  They're all the CUTE-3 optics from LEDiL, but I'll be using four of the narrow optics, two of the medium optics and two of the wide.  This should give me a powerful throw and a ton of wide angle spill and cover everything in between.  I'm expecting a long-reaching WALL of light.  In the unit, the optics will be positioned, W-M-N-N-N-N-M-W.

Lenses

 

 yeah, that should do the job Smile I didn't even realise that you can't get Cute-3 elliptical optics, which kind of makes sense as you'd have to use the triple in a certain orientation for it to work, but it's still a bit of a shame because those wides are going to be putting a lot of their light up into the sky (and mediums and narrows to lesser and lesser extents). I'm more used to 20mm optics where there's a bit more variety.

PilotPTK wrote:

Each triple is a series of the three emitters (roughly 9.9V Vf).  The triples are individually driven using their own SMPS controlled by the DSP, so they're independent from each other.  I could run every triple at a different current, if I wanted.

that's a really neat bit of engineering. Varying current to different triples would be handy if you wanted to vary the beam within a certain thermal envelope too.

PilotPTK wrote:

I have modeled it using the very thin FR-4 circuit board with tons of vias (which performs BETTER than an MCPCB), and I modeled the emitter itself using CREE's published thermal resistance through the package.  At 3A per emitter (10W, roughly), I'm looking at a DeltaT of about 31C from the emitter to the enclosure (25C through the emitter package and 6C through the PCB).  at my 100C trip-point, the emitters themselves will be running at about 131C.  100C is the trip-point, though, not the expected run-temperature.  My study suggests that even on a very hot 90F day, the enclosure temp should not exceed about 78C - and this is worst case scenario with almost no air-movement.  Just a little air-movement from wind or from driving would reduce that temperature drastically (10s of C).  Real-world, normal use temperature of the enclosure is probably about 60-65C, meaning the emitters would be running 91-96C.

When talking about the enclosure to LED temp, you mentioned 5 or 10C.  An MCPCB 'might' be able to maintain 5 or 10C from enclosure to LED Package, but remember the temp that matters isn't package - it's the actual diode junction.  The XM-L has a 2.5C/W thermal resistance from Packge to Junction, so a MCPCB that could maintain 10C from Enclosure to Package would be able to maintain a 35C Delta from Enclosure to Junction when the emitter is running at 10 Watts.  To get an XM-L to output 100% of it's rated Lumens, one would have to mount it on an MCPCB and then keep the MCPCB at minus 5 or 10C.

CREE rates the XM-L to operate at up to 150C Junction temperature, so with 31C Delta between enclosure and junction, I'm perfectly safe cutting off at 100C enclosure temp.

PPtk

I don't doubt that you've done your modelling and the thermal paths look exceptional, I'm only wondering if the efficiency losses from running the LEDs at higher currents are worth it, when you could get a similar light output at a lower current and LED temperature. A guy called Troutie on the mtbr DIY light forum has done some tests of light output vs. temperature for the XM-L and it was pretty instructive, even if I can't find it any more Sad

Both of my lights (~10W and ~20W, so a shadow of yours) have their thermal trip set at 60C, so that the LEDs should never run at more than 90C, although that is more to protect the driver. Their real world temperature is most likely a lot lower than that. I just think that a trip point set so high doesn't give you much of a margin, that's all.

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mattthemuppet wrote:

 yeah, that should do the job Smile I didn't even realise that you can't get Cute-3 elliptical optics, which kind of makes sense as you'd have to use the triple in a certain orientation for it to work, but it's still a bit of a shame because those wides are going to be putting a lot of their light up into the sky (and mediums and narrows to lesser and lesser extents). I'm more used to 20mm optics where there's a bit more variety.

I would be really happy if the CUTE-3 Optics were available in an elliptical, but sadly, they're not.  Thankfully, although I'm going to be pointing a bit of the beam up into the sky and down into the dirt, I'm pretty confident that I have enough raw lumens that it just won't matter.

 

mattthemuppet wrote:

that's a really neat bit of engineering. Varying current to different triples would be handy if you wanted to vary the beam within a certain thermal envelope too.

Not only does it help keeping thermals under control, but because I have the different optics, it also allows me to vary the beam pattern.  I can turn on All flood, All Spot, or any combination that I want.

 

mattthemuppet wrote:

I don't doubt that you've done your modelling and the thermal paths look exceptional, I'm only wondering if the efficiency losses from running the LEDs at higher currents are worth it, when you could get a similar light output at a lower current and LED temperature. A guy called Troutie on the mtbr DIY light forum has done some tests of light output vs. temperature for the XM-L and it was pretty instructive, even if I can't find it any more Sad

Both of my lights (~10W and ~20W, so a shadow of yours) have their thermal trip set at 60C, so that the LEDs should never run at more than 90C, although that is more to protect the driver. Their real world temperature is most likely a lot lower than that. I just think that a trip point set so high doesn't give you much of a margin, that's all.

I have little doubt that you're quite right - Almost as many lumens will be produced at 2 amps as will be at 3 because of thermal sag.  That's why the dimming function exists.  Most of the time, I can run at 66% (2 Amps) which will be more than adequate for most situations - when I really need max power though - it's available.  Unless my modeling is way off, the 100C trip point is still 20C shy of being destructive to the emitters.  For me, that's plenty of margin.  Keep in mind also that my thermal model suggests that 100C would be almost impossible to reach - 78C is max expected even under really extreme circumstances (90F Ambient with practically zero air-flow).  100C is the Safety Shut-off point, it has nothing to do with lumen efficiency. (edited - It's actually not a "Shut-Off" point, it's a back off point.  The light will not go off, it will just self-dim to maintain < 100C)

PPtk

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PilotPTK
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Dimming Code Finished.  Small demo - The bluetooth communications routines are not done yet, so this isn't being 'controlled' by anything - the DSP is auto-looping from max bright to zero and back again.  Right now, the current limit is set to 1.2Amps instead of the full 3 because I don't have any heat-sinking behind the circuit board.

http://youtu.be/YAa_RRm76rI

PPtk

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Foy
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Already looks bright as heck in the video.

 

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PilotPTK
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It is - It was really difficult to video without the video camera going into saturation.  I had to turn all the lights in the room on, and you can still see how dark my desk-pad gets as the camera closes the aperture.

PPtk

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mattthemuppet
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PilotPTK wrote:

I would be really happy if the CUTE-3 Optics were available in an elliptical, but sadly, they're not.  Thankfully, although I'm going to be pointing a bit of the beam up into the sky and down into the dirt, I'm pretty confident that I have enough raw lumens that it just won't matter.

I don't doubt that last bit at all Smile

PilotPTK wrote:

Not only does it help keeping thermals under control, but because I have the different optics, it also allows me to vary the beam pattern.  I can turn on All flood, All Spot, or any combination that I want.

 

I think that's one of the coolest things I've heard of. If bike lights could be bigger, this is one of the things I'd hope to see.

PilotPTK wrote:

I have little doubt that you're quite right - Almost as many lumens will be produced at 2 amps as will be at 3 because of thermal sag.  That's why the dimming function exists.  Most of the time, I can run at 66% (2 Amps) which will be more than adequate for most situations - when I really need max power though - it's available.  Unless my modeling is way off, the 100C trip point is still 20C shy of being destructive to the emitters.  For me, that's plenty of margin.  Keep in mind also that my thermal model suggests that 100C would be almost impossible to reach - 78C is max expected even under really extreme circumstances (90F Ambient with practically zero air-flow).  100C is the Safety Shut-off point, it has nothing to do with lumen efficiency. (edited - It's actually not a "Shut-Off" point, it's a back off point.  The light will not go off, it will just self-dim to maintain < 100C)

PPtk

you're right, I was somewhat mixing the two things (thermal sag and safety cut off) - one is about efficiency, which is somewhat moot if your alternator can handle it, and the other is about protecting the electronics, which you seem to have perfectly under control. Being able to control power levels is a huge boon and might even help with visibility in different conditions (dusty, foggy, highly reflective terrain) where less light could mean better sight. I almost always run my bar light at ~1.8A as there isn't a huge difference between that and 3A (although I'm told the difference is more marked the more LEDs you're running) and the difference in battery life is considerable, but it's nice to have that little extra when I need it or when I want to wind up my mate in front of me Smile

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Well, I've been really busy again - and I've not had much time to invest in this project.. But I did get some more XM-L's soldered down (4 sets of 3 installed now) and There are no interaction problems.  The sets can run quite happily in conjunction with one another.  The problem at this point is with taking measurements and looking at signals - it's just SOOO bright in and around the circuit board that I can't even see the components.  I finally put some diffusion film that I had laying around over the groups of emitters, and that helps a lot.

Since the rise/fall times of the FET Gates was a problem, I figured you all might be interested in how well the new gate drivers work.

This is a capture of the scope taking measurements of (top) the gate of the fet and (bottom) the output of the DSP / Input of the Gate Driver.  These parts work incredibly well.
GateDriver 

As can be seen, there is 47.7 nano-seconds of delay from input at the gate-driver to when the gate driver begins driving the gate.  Once that happens, these things slam the gate voltage from zero to 5.5V (well above Gate-Turn-On / rdsOn) in a frightening 6 nano-seconds.  Incredible. 53.7 Nano-Seconds for the whole turn-on.  The turn-off has roughly the same delay, and an even shorter fall of about 4 nano-seconds.  Remember that a nano-second is 0.000000001 Seconds.  We're talking FAST.

Going well, just slow because of my limited time.. But forward slowly is a hell of a lot better than backward quickly Smile

PPtk

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bose301s
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Where in Michigan are you from? I am originally from Michigan, lived there until I graduated from school and moved to NC for a job, I really miss Michigan though to be honest.

PilotPTK
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South East.  The Northern Suburbs of Detroit.

I've tried to leave twice.  Never works.  Hard place to get out of your blood..

PPtk

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bose301s
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PilotPTK wrote:

South East.  The Northern Suburbs of Detroit.

I've tried to leave twice.  Never works.  Hard place to get out of your blood..

PPtk

Ah, I was from the West Coast. Spent 5 years up at Michigan Tech though before moving down here, like I said, I miss it.
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Oh I also wear 2 or 3 layers of sunnies/dark tinted safety glasses to reduce the amount of light, really helps reduce the squint factor too Cool

"like everyone else - I’m looking for my next “last” flashlight" -  ohnonothimagain

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@PilotPTK what exactly did you use for seal? I've been searching for silicon sheets to cut out seals.

Now I see

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Matjazz wrote:

@PilotPTK what exactly did you use for seal? I've been searching for silicon sheets to cut out seals.

Not the Pilot-man, but search ebay for silicone baking sheet. Just make sure it's smooth both sides. (Some have texture on one or both sides.) I found some in go-fast red that was just about 1mm thick. The ebay vendor I used was siliconesupplies, but I'm not sure they ship to the rest of Europe.


 

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Very nice little pocket light there Cool

I wish that I could share some photos of my lumen maker,  but the patrons that commissioned it want to keep it a bit under wraps for now.  

It has much in common with your device.  It is built around 15,000 lumen/150 watt (30V/5A) Bridgelux LED arrays in independently controlled modules.  Each module has it's own AVR based driver/dimmer/thermal manager/fault manager.  They talk to each other and a central control via a RS-485 network.  Forced air or liquid cooling though...  each module is less than 50 cubic inches.  Input power is via a dual-redundant failsafe power supply with 2x16P 20Ah A123 LiFePO4 battery backup.

The biggest configuration so far is 180,000 lumens in a 12 module array.  There is talk of doing a 540,000 lumen beast.  There is currently a limit of 65,535 modules in an array (but that could be changed) so there is capability for a little more expansion.

PilotPTK
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Matjazz wrote:

@PilotPTK what exactly did you use for seal? I've been searching for silicon sheets to cut out seals.

http://www.mcmaster.com/#8977K713

I am currently extremely busy with work. Please do not expect a response from me quickly. I will be dropping in as time permits, but the amount of time I can dedicate to responding to topics and PMs is very limited.

PilotPTK
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texaspyro wrote:

Very nice little pocket light there Cool

I wish that I could share some photos of my lumen maker,  but the patrons that commissioned it want to keep it a bit under wraps for now.  

It has much in common with your device.  It is built around 15,000 lumen/150 watt (30V/5A) Bridgelux LED arrays in independently controlled modules.  Each module has it's own AVR based driver/dimmer/thermal manager/fault manager.  They talk to each other and a central control via a RS-485 network.  Forced air or liquid cooling though...  each module is less than 50 cubic inches.  Input power is via a dual-redundant failsafe power supply with 2x16P 20Ah A123 LiFePO4 battery backup.

The biggest configuration so far is 180,000 lumens in a 12 module array.  There is talk of doing a 540,000 lumen beast.  There is currently a limit of 65,535 modules in an array (but that could be changed) so there is capability for a little more expansion.

Very cool.  I do a lot of controls stuff, so RS-485 is one of my love-hate relationships.  Nice job, it sounds..

 

PPtk

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PilotPTK
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viktori wrote:

If I can offer an idea for the future ... perhaps make the circuit board modular? 1 module for 3 XM-Ls? That way anyone can order 3, break 1 at their first try at soldering, and later  use 2 for total of 6 XM-Ls. Or similar.

You get the picture.

I have been SWAMPED at work, an out of town quite a bit, so I haven't put one second into my big light..  Too bad, but I can't do fun projects like this one without the income that working generates Smile

In the little bit of free-time that I have had, however.. well, ask and ye' shall receive..

LEDModule

LEDModule2

PPtk

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Sexy time.

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Theeere we go! Smile

Now, let's see...

This is my flashlight collection.

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omg, just looking at what you've done before --> expecting awesomeness again! but in a smaller package

"like everyone else - I’m looking for my next “last” flashlight" -  ohnonothimagain

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I'm an offroader, and just a few days ago, me and a friend were talking about Xml potential vs. available led bars for 4x4 use (which I believe use P7, Xre or Xpg emitters, but none seen so far with Xml), so I showed him the potential of Xml turning off headlights of my Nissan Patrol and driving in the middle of the woods (pitch black) just hanging my DRY out of the window at High setting.

The beam pattern was less than perfect, ok, but lighting road and surrounding was great, and that was with 3 Xml only. Let me say the stock headlights were dim and yellow in comparison. Now let's imagine your 24 Xml bar! Wow!

I'm following your build-up with growing interest, my electronic knowledge is basic so I have no chances to make my own lightbar... Think that my original very rough plan was to try to use two DRY head assembly, making on a lathe some sort of support to thread the heads on, and then experiment with RC model Electronic Speed Control (fet based) to drive the emitters.

As rough as it sounds, I still like the idea of the RC ESC for driving the leds as it would allow dimming from zero to full power at the turn of a knob on the dash. Not sure how to limit max power though...

Would you think a similar dash "linear" control would be available with your lightbar?

 

I really hope to buy from you one of your superb lightbar in a near future (black anod' for me, thanks!), or at least I'm willing to do that if they are not going to cost a kidney and some more... ;o)

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I know I really really want!

"like everyone else - I’m looking for my next “last” flashlight" -  ohnonothimagain

PilotPTK
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Most. Awesome. Picture. Ever

Smile

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fishinfool
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okwchin wrote:

 

I know I really really want!

 

                               

 

Don wrote:

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dinac
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Holly $hit man Smile i want to see this in the dark

I think that your beam will move Earth from its orbit !?! Smile

Massive respect for developmenting the electronics, You have to have big head for that Smile

Wish best for project from Croatia & to see this monster  at the market Wink

I am building similar project , but with only 6pcs  XML T6 for my ATV due to limited power from generator, I will open thread

again - massive respect for doing this !!

 

 

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