Commercial lighting projects differ from residential jobs because they require greater amounts of illumination while maintaining efficiency. Incandescent and fluorescent technology may be enough for residential and interior projects, but brightening up the area around a business requires more advanced fixtures. High intensity discharge (or HID) lamps are the perfect answer to this problem, because they combine high luminous efficiency with high durability.
For interior commercial lighting projects, incandescent, fluorescent or LED fixtures are usually enough to provide the illumination, color and decorative touch a business owner looks for. Incandescent and fluorescent bulbs, though, don’t have the power to work with exterior spaces. For these projects, HID lamps like metal halides or sodium vapor lamps are typically necessary. HID bulbs work with a combination of xenon or argon gas and metal vapors. When exposed to an electrical current, the gas becomes excited and smashes its electrons against metal vapor atoms. This change in energy is emitted in the form of photons, producing brilliant illumination that can be customized and controlled readily. HID lamps can produce illumination in a number of colors, including pure white. White illumination is perfect for visibility and color rendering, which is why it is a popular option for sports arenas and other large exterior spaces.
LED technology is also an effective form of exterior illumination and is the most efficient fixture available. Metal halides and sodium lamps can normally perform for about 25, 000 hours before replacement, but LED lamps can produce about 50,000 hours worth of illumination before needing to be replaced. HID and LED technology also produce a lot of illumination per watt of energy, making them cost effective options when volume lighting is needed.