LONDON Startup company Ceravision Ltd. (Milton Keynes, England) has said it has invented a microwave-powered light bulb that is more efficient than filament or fluorescent lighting and with a long stable lamp life. The company said it has prototypes available for evaluation by lamp and electronics manufacturers.
The Continuum 2.4 system comprises a microwave source and power amplifier, a microwave interface unit and a low-loss dielectric resonator with an interior void where noble gas is excited to produce light.
One of the breakthroughs claimed by Ceravision is the ability to prevent high levels of microwave power being reflected back to the source and damaging it at switch on. The microwave interface unit limits the amount reflected back to less than 0.5 percent of incident microwave power, the company said.
Instead the output is launched via a metal antenna into a metal-coated low-loss dielectric resonator. The mechanical dimensions of the resonator determine the ultimate performance of the lamp system and where the microwave energy will be focused. At the focal point the resonator has a cavity into which the electrode-less "burner" is inserted.
According to information contained at Ceravision's website the microwave light has an efficiency of more than 50 percent, compared with fluorescent tubes' efficiency of about 15% and traditional light bulbs, which emit only about 5 percent of their energy conversion as light, the vast majority being emitted in the form of heat. In addition, unlike compact fluorescent tubes, Continuum 2.4 contains no mercury.