Situation

Case Study: GORE® Protective Vents Improve Lighting Performance by Reducing Condensation

For more than 30 years, BEKA (Pty) Ltd of South Africa has been a leading manufacturer of high-quality lighting systems that maintain mechanical, operational and thermal integrity while reducing energy consumption and total cost of ownership. Designed specifically for large sports stadiums, the BEKA Stadialux XP floodlights are engineered with a robust die-cast aluminum housing sealed with silicone gaskets. During operation, the floodlights generate enough heat to raise the internal temperature to almost 125 °C. When the lights are turned off, the temperature quickly drops to ambient, often causing a change as much as 100 °C. This drop results in pressure differentials that can create an internal vacuum, so BEKA’s engineering team integrated a charcoal vent to equalize pressure. After approximately five years in the field, the output of the floodlights’ reflector systems had declined significantly.

Challenge

BEKA’s engineering team tested the floodlights in the field and found moisture vapor inside the sealed housings. Over time, the recurring vacuums caused stress on the housing’s seals, which led to water vapor being drawn into the enclosure. As the vapor condensed, the water had no escape path, so it collected on the reflectors and compromised their output. The engineers realized that the charcoal vent did not provide IEC’s ingress protection level IP65 that they needed. They considered using more rugged seals, but this very expensive change would not ultimately solve the problem. A small hole in the housing wall would equalize pressure, but it would also provide easy access for contaminants such as insects, rain, dirt and dust. They needed a solution that would equalize internal pressure without creating a path for water and other contaminants to enter.

Solution

Case Study: Beka pressure curve

BEKA tested several alternatives and found that integrating a GORE® Protective Vent into the floodlight design yielded the best performance. Gore’s engineers collaborated with the BEKA team to understand the original floodlight design and evaluate the best location for the vent. They then calculated the amount of free space inside the housing to determine the most severe vacuum that could possibly occur.

Based on this evaluation, Gore recommended the GORE® Metal Vent to eliminate the condensation that was reducing the reflector’s output. This vent provides continuous airflow to equalize pressure and prevent the vacuum, while blocking liquid and contaminant ingress. Also, the added durability of the metal vent meets BEKA’s requirements for hail protection and vandalism resistance.

According to Johann Schleritzko, Managing Director of BEKA (Pty) Ltd, “We engineer our lighting systems to ensure reliable performance for at least 25 years in every climatic condition. After extensive testing, we found that GORE® Protective Vents provide the durability and reliability our customers expect, and with Gore’s proven expertise in lighting applications, we are confident that their vents will last for the life of our products.”

 

 

Case Study: Beka uses Gore vents

Available in a variety of designs, sizes and product forms, GORE Protective Vents equalize pressure, prevent contamination and reduce condensation in a variety of applications. The GORE Metal Vent is the best solution for the BEKA Stadialux XP because of ist high airflow and more rugged design.

FOR INDUSTRIAL USE ONLY

Not for use in food, drug, cosmetic or medical device manufacturing, processing, or packaging operations.