What is a T5?

Discussion in 'ATI Aquaristik' started by ATI North America, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. ATI North America

    ATI North America Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Partner Member 2019

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    Good Evening Reefers!

    Have you ever looked at your tank, and said to yourself, "What is a T5?"


    A T5 is a glass tube containing argon or krypton, phosphors and a tiny amount of mercury. When electricity is applied to the electrodes on the end an arc is formed across the tube producing UV energy. This UV energy excites the phosphors which in turns causes them to emit visible light.


    What does T5 mean? Well the T indicates tubular, and the 5 means the lamp is 5/8” in diameter. Another example is a T8 would be 8/8” or 1” in diameter.

    The type of phosphor determines the color, some examples:
    ·Calcium tungstate ----------- blue

    ·Strontium chloroapatite ------ blue

    ·Barium titanium blue --------- green

    ·Zinc sulfate ----------------- green

    ·Magnesium fluorogermanate -- red


    ATI Lamps are designed to run in ambient air temperature at 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Output will drop about 1% ever 2 degree rise in temperature above 100. This is why ATI fixtures are built with a fan, to keep the lamps as cool as possible while operating which increases life span as well as output. Proper orientation of lamp (put the end with the label opposite the vent where the air exits the fixture) allows the heat from the cathode to be distributed down the lamp which warms the middle.

    Lamp Seasoning is a critical aspect most reefers overlook. Seasoning of the lamp occurs in during the first 50 hours of operation. This seasoning period allows the mercury to evenly distribute throughout the lamp aiding consistent output throughout the whole lamp. Seasoning should be accomplished at full output.

    Hope that sheds some light :laugh: on what's going on in your fixture!


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    http://www.atinorthamerica.com
    Visit our YouTube channel to view instructional how-to videos about ATI products.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2015
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  2. Rob.D

    Rob.D Moderator Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award ETRC Member

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    Very interesting info, thanks for posting it.
     
  3. IronVulture

    IronVulture Valuable Member R2R Supporter

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    Can you elaborate on seasoning new bulbs?
     
  4. Spongie

    Spongie Well-Known Member ETRC Member

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    ^+1
     
  5. ATI North America

    ATI North America Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Partner Member 2019

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    Seasoning refers to the burn in period when lamps are brand new. When you first fire up a new lamp it does not work to its full potential until the seasoning or burn in period is complete. Ideally you would run your lamps 40-50 hours uninterrupted prior to using them on an aquarium, this however is not generally realistic. What is realistic and considered good practice is to run the lamps at full intensity without dimming for the first 40-50 hours. This burn in period allows the trace amount of mercury to distribute evenly across the whole length of the tube. Often times brand new T5 lamps will shimmer or appear to have some areas darker than others. This is due to the lack of seasoning when first operating and should not be cause for concern as it will dissipate with use.

    Let me know if you have any other questions!
     
  6. IronVulture

    IronVulture Valuable Member R2R Supporter

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    Awesome thanks
     
  7. Mike in CT

    Mike in CT Valuable Member CTARS Member

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    Why doesn't the manufacturer "season" the bulbs under a controlled environment? Seems like it would be a win/win for everybody. Happier customers getting optimum output from their light, in turn more return customers and more recommendations.
     
  8. zzl630

    zzl630 Active Member

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    Exactly. I would love to just plug and play. It would be a great selling point.
     
  9. IronVulture

    IronVulture Valuable Member R2R Supporter

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    I would think that would diminish the shelf life
     
  10. wangspeed

    wangspeed Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    That's an awful lot of electricty they would have to use, when it sounds like it will eventually get to an even distribution anyways.

    I do have a comment though. I've taken air temps at the vent side of my 6 bulb 48" Sunpower, and I read about 140F, in ambient of about 70F. That seems really high to me. It sounds like I have the bulbs reversed though. I have the label on the vent side. I even retrofitted thicker fans to move more air. When you say that they are meant for 95F, is that the temp I should see of the air exiting the vent?
     
  11. silverarrow

    silverarrow Active Member

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    After reading this I think I have the orientation of the bulbs installed incorrectly as well. The labeled end should be opposite of the vent slots.
     
  12. ATI North America

    ATI North America Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Partner Member 2019

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    Correct, for optimum cooling the label end should be on the opposite side of the vent.
     
  13. nova65ss

    nova65ss Valuable Member

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    Wrong post.....
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2015
  14. DeeBee

    DeeBee Active Member R2R Supporter

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    I am new to the ATI fixtures and am confused. Quoted directly from the Sunpower user guide "The labeled end should line up over the hole in the fixture." Is the hole in the fixture not considered the vent???
     
  15. Pete polyp

    Pete polyp acro serial killer R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    From my understanding the mercury will settle again as its being stored and shipped. So it would be pretty useless for them to burn them in as a manufacturing procedure.
     
  16. ATI North America

    ATI North America Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Partner Member 2019

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    Just to help clear things up, here are some photos to illustrate what we mean when it comes to the labels, how to install, exhaust vents, etc etc

    label side.JPG
    exhaust vent.JPG
     
  17. DeeBee

    DeeBee Active Member R2R Supporter

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    That clears it up. Thank you!
     
  18. dodgerblew

    dodgerblew Valuable Member

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    I don't run my dimmable at 100%, max is 90% for a few hours. Is it safe to assume that's the bulbs will eventually burn in, it'll just take longer. Great info and thanks. Two of my bulbs are backwards. Will be fixed in AM
     
  19. buddythelion

    buddythelion Valuable Member

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    I've been running my T5s all wrong... I had no idea which side the labels were on mattered!
     
  20. ATI North America

    ATI North America Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Partner Member 2019

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    Glad we could help teach you something new!
     
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