Starting And Control Circuits For Gas Discharge Lamp Using Transistors Patents (Class 315/DIG7)
  • Patent number: 6163114
    Abstract: In an operating circuit for a low-pressure discharge lamp, the lamp current is controlled depending on the lamp temperature or the luminous flux.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 1999
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2000
    Assignee: Patent-Treuhand-Gesellschaft fuer elektrische Gluehlampen mbH
    Inventors: Klaus Fischer, Ludwig Reiser
  • Patent number: 6160362
    Abstract: An electronic ballast for reducing blackening of a high intensity discharge lamp, reducing stress on both the lamp and ballast components caused by excessive voltage and current flow and increasing the lamp's effective life. These advantages are achieved through a ballast controller which readjusts the operating frequency of the lamp during each of the three phases of lamp start-up to limit lamp voltage to a predetermined level.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 12, 2000
    Assignee: Philips Electronics North America Corporation
    Inventors: Michael Shone, Phuong Huynh
  • Patent number: 6153983
    Abstract: A fill wave electronic starter 10 includes an input circuit 12 which delivers a rectified voltage to charging capacitor 28. During a first state, voltage on charging capacitor 28 is used to turn on switching circuit 30, whereby current is delivered to cathodes 56 and 58. When voltage on capacitor 28 reaches a breakdown voltage of diode 46, latch circuit 50 is placed in an on state causing capacitor 28 to discharge, turning off transistor 32. This action delivers a high-voltage lamp ignition pulse 62 to lamp 60 causing it to start. Current flowing through input circuit 12 maintains conduction of latch circuit 50, rendering a low impedance state which maintains MOSFET transistor 32 off, and starter 10 in a disabled state after initial pulse 62.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2000
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Louis R. Nerone, Laszlo S. Ilyes, Mircea Voskerician
  • Patent number: 6150773
    Abstract: A model and computer program for designing the output stage of a high frequency electronic ballast for a fluorescent lamp. The user specifies a plurality of parameters relating to the operation of the fluorescent lamp, including lamp running power, running voltage, maximum preheating voltage for the lamp, minimum running frequency for the lamp, and an input voltage for the ballast. Based upon these parameters, the computer program calculates the values for various components of the ballast, including the inductor and capacitor of the output stage, such that the preheat frequency is greater than the ignition frequency, the ignition frequency is greater than or equal to the running frequency, the preheat voltage is less than the maximum preheat voltage, and the difference between the preheat frequency and the ignition frequency is greater than about 5 kHz.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2000
    Assignee: International Rectifier Corporation
    Inventors: Thomas J. Ribarich, John J. Ribarich, John E. Parry
  • Patent number: 6150768
    Abstract: An electronic ballast is powered from a constant-magnitude DC supply voltage and provides a high-magnitude high-frequency voltage at a ballast output across which are connected two lamp-ballast series-combinations, each consisting of an instant-start fluorescent lamp series-connected with a ballasting capacitor. An auxiliary capacitor is connected in series with the ballast output, thereby having the total ballast output current flowing through it and causing an auxiliary high-frequency voltage to develop across its terminals. The constant-magnitude DC supply voltage is provided via a series-combination of a power-line-connected rectifier delivering an unfiltered full-wave-rectified power line voltage across a pair of rectifier DC terminals and an auxiliary DC power supply delivering an auxiliary DC voltage across a pair of auxiliary DC terminals from which, under open circuit condition, is available a DC voltage of magnitude equal to the peak magnitude of the full-wave-rectified power line voltage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 18, 1994
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2000
    Inventor: Ole K. Nilssen
  • Patent number: 6147462
    Abstract: In a ballast for parallel operation of discharge lamps in potentially explosive areas, an inverter is provided which has a branch which is assigned to the two discharge lamps, and in this respect is used twice. Two lamp-specific branches can be switched off separately if a fault occurs at the assigned discharge lamp.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2000
    Assignee: Vossloh-Schwabe Elektronik GmbH
    Inventors: Roland Sing, Gert Knobloch
  • Patent number: 6147458
    Abstract: A circuit arrangement for operating a semiconductor light source includes connection terminals for connecting a control unit, an input filter, a converter comprising a control circuit, output terminals for connecting the semiconductor light source, an apparatus CM for removing a leakage current occurring in the control unit in the non-conducting state, and a self-regulating circuit for deactivating the apparatus CM. The circuit arrangement is also provided with a detection circuit for detecting an incorrect functioning of the converter or the semiconductor light source. For this purpose, preferably a minimum voltage and a maximum voltage are detected at the output terminals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2000
    Assignees: U.S. Philips Corporation, Lumileds Lighting B.V.
    Inventors: Marcel J. M. Bucks, Engbert B. G. Nijhof, Johannes E. Algra, John E. K. G. De Clercq, Pieter W. Habing, Stefan E. Roijers
  • Patent number: 6147461
    Abstract: An operating apparatus of a discharge lamp for operating the discharge lamp having an arc tube defining a discharge space includes: generation means for generating a first waveform signal having a frequency component of an acoustic resonance frequency exciting a mode which straightens an arc discharge, a center line of a waveform of the first waveform signal being maintained at a fixed level; and modulation means for modulating the first waveform signal periodically so that a polarity of the center line of the first waveform signal changes alternately at a modulation frequency which is lower than the acoustic resonance frequency, and generating a modulated signal. A modulation depth .alpha./.beta., where .alpha. is a peak-to-peak amplitude of the first waveform signal and .beta. is an effective value of an amplitude of the modulated signal, is set at such a value that a sealed material in the arc tube is prevented from adhering to a center portion of the arc tube in substantially a strip shape.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2000
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Satoshi Kominami, Koji Miyazaki
  • Patent number: 6147463
    Abstract: Control device (3) for the operation of a load, in particular at least one gas discharge lamp (10, 15). The control device (3) is divided into a first purely software controlled control unit (3a) a second control unit (3b) realized purely in hardware. The two control units (3a, 3b) are connected with one another via a bidirectional connection line, the second control unit receiving exclusively internal operating state information (I.sub.intern) and the first control unit (3a) receiving external control information (I.sub.extern) By means of the division of the control device into a purely software controlled control unit (3a) and a control unit constructed purely of hardware (3b) the control device (3) in accordance with the invention has both a speed sufficient for rapid control procedures and also a sufficient flexibility with regard to alterations. Advantageously, the control device (3) in accordance with the invention is employed in an electronic ballast for the operation of gas discharge lamps (10, 15).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2000
    Assignee: Tridonic Bauelemente GmbH
    Inventors: Siegfried Luger, Alfred Trostl
  • Patent number: 6144174
    Abstract: To control low-pressure fluorescent lamps, there is provided a device comprising a first change-over switch circuit and a second change-over switch circuit, respectively including a first power transistor and a second power transistor. The first change-over switch circuit first of all measures the period of time when the second power transistor is on. Then, secondly, it turns the first power transistor on for a period equal to the period measured.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 15, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2000
    Assignee: SGS-Thomson Microelectronics S.A.
    Inventor: Marco Bildgen
  • Patent number: 6144539
    Abstract: An arrangement for protecting low-voltage control circuitry from externally applied high voltages comprises a voltage source (30) and a current-sourcing circuit (40). Current-sourcing circuit (40) provides current to an external controller (18) in a normal manner when an external source of high voltage is not applied to the output connections (42,44), protects itself (40) and the voltage source (30) from damage when an external source of high voltage is applied to the output connections (42,44), and provides current to the external controller (18) in a normal manner after the external source of high voltage is subsequently removed from the output connections (42,44). The arrangement may be employed as the dimming interface circuit (900) of an electronic dimming ballast (60) for gas discharge lamps to protect ballast circuitry from damage due to wiring errors during installation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2000
    Assignee: Osram Sylvania Inc.
    Inventors: John G. Konopka, Sameer Sodhi
  • Patent number: 6144169
    Abstract: A triac dimmable electronic ballast having a single stage feedback power factor inverter is configured to isolate the resonant circuit current from a DC bias, or a DC transient caused by activations of the triac. The resonant circuit is driven by a high frequency inverter, and contains a feedback path to a DC storage element. Two DC blocking devices are provided, one between the resonant circuit and the inverter, and one between the resonant circuit and the DC storage element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2000
    Assignee: Philips Electronics North America Corporation
    Inventor: Jerzy Janczak
  • Patent number: 6144445
    Abstract: A fluorescent lighting system has: (A) a central power supply including: (i) a parallel-resonant self-oscillating bridge inverter operative to provide a 35 kHz sinusoidal output voltage at a pair of primary output terminals; (ii) a tank-inductor and a tank-capacitor parallel-connected across the primary output terminals; and (iii) plural pairs of secondary output terminals, each connected with the primary output terminals via its own dedicated current-limiting sub-circuit; thereby to prevent a load connected therewith from drawing more than a certain amount of power; thereby, in turn, to render each pair of secondary output terminals fire-hazard-safe and shock-hazard-safe; each pair of secondary power output terminals being connected with its own power output receptacle; and (B) a light-weight power cord plug-in-connected with one of the power output receptacles and having a pair of power conductors between which are connected a number of individually ballasted lighting units; each lighting unit having at lea
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2000
    Inventor: Ole K. Nilssen
  • Patent number: 6144168
    Abstract: A circuit arrangement for generating an a.c. voltage, in particular the operating voltage of a high-pressure gas discharge lamp in a motor vehicle headlight, includes a transformer with a primary winding and a secondary winding which are closely linked together. These two windings form an autotransformer. The primary winding is connected at one terminal to a d.c. voltage source. At its other terminal, the intermediate tap of the transformer, it is connected to the secondary winding and also to a controlled switch. The controlled switch connects the intermediate tap to the negative terminal of the d.c. voltage source. The second terminal of the secondary winding is connected across a capacitor to a high-pressure gas discharge lamp which forms the output load. Output a.c. voltage, i.e., the operating voltage, is applied across this load. The switch is damped by the series connection of a resistor and a capacitor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 22, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2000
    Assignee: Robert Bosch GmbH
    Inventor: Robert Kern
  • Patent number: 6140771
    Abstract: Method for detecting the rectification effect in at least one gas discharge lamp (10) and electronic ballast for operating at least one gas discharge lamp, which recognises the appearance of the rectification effect in the gas discharge lamp (10). In order to be able to detect the appearance of the rectification effect in the gas discharge lamp (10) simply and with high sensitivity there is monitored the current (i.sub.1) flowing via a primary winding (7A), connected parallel to the gas discharge lamp (10), of a heating transformer (7A-C) or a parameter (i.sub.2, u.sub.3) dependent upon this current (i.sub.1) , and in the event that a predetermined limit value is overshot the presence of the rectification effect in the gas discharge lamp (10) is determined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 31, 2000
    Assignee: Tridonic Bauelemente GmbH
    Inventors: Siegfried Luger, Thomas Marinelli, Falk Richter
  • Patent number: 6140779
    Abstract: A lighting system for a fluorescent lamp includes an inverter circuit having a pair of outputs between which is connected a resonant circuit of an inductor and a capacitor in series, with the discharge lamp connected in parallel with the capacitor. An inversely frequency dependent voltage is applied between the lamp electrodes according to a predefined resonance characteristic. During a preheat period, which precedes a lightup period during which the lamp is to be lit up with the commencement of an electric discharge between the lamp electrodes, the voltage is made lower in the first half than in the second, thereby averting the sudden flow of a large preheating current through the filamentary lamp electrodes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 31, 2000
    Assignee: Sanken Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masaki Kanazawa, Hideki Nakamichi, Hironobu Sou
  • Patent number: 6140770
    Abstract: The circuit comprises a switched dc/dc converter of the "fly-back" type, a second switched dc/dc converter of the "feed-forward" type, an H-shaped bridge switching circuit which is connected to the dc/dc converters and in the central branch of which the discharge lamp and an associated reactive starter device are disposed, and a control circuit which can drive the dc/dc converters and the bridge switching circuit in a manner such that, each time the lamp is switched on, a very high voltage is applied initially, in particular, in order to start the lamp, and subsequently a low voltage is applied, but with a high electrical power, in order to support the passage of a large current through the lamp during the heating (warming-up) of the lamp and during the subsequent steady operation of the lamp.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 1994
    Date of Patent: October 31, 2000
    Assignee: Marelli Autornica S.p.A.
    Inventors: Andrea Nepote, Dario Decurti
  • Patent number: 6137235
    Abstract: The invention relates to optimized-loss base drive for a bipolar transistor bridge oscillator circuit, by using base series capacitors and by not hng any non-reactive resistances in the base drive circuits.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2000
    Assignee: Patent-Treuhand-Gesellschaft fur elektrische Gluehlampen mbH
    Inventor: Felix Franck
  • Patent number: 6137240
    Abstract: A universal ballast control circuit allows a universal ballast to accommodate a gas discharge lamp within a relatively wide wattage range using a low-speed microcontroller. The control circuit drives the ballast to start, run and dim a particular lamp type by providing a control voltage signal to a conventional inverter MOSFET driver to effect dynamic and selective changes in the duty cycle and the frequency of the inverter signal. In one aspect of the invention, the control circuit comprises a generator for generating a periodic analog voltage signal, a source for producing a DC voltage signal, a controller which includes a low-speed microcontroller for varying the frequency of the periodic analog voltage signal and the magnitude of the DC voltage signal, and a comparator for comparing the periodic analog voltage signal and the DC voltage signal to produce a control voltage signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 31, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2000
    Assignee: Lumion Corporation
    Inventor: Alexei Bogdan
  • Patent number: 6130509
    Abstract: An apparatus and method are provided for driving a cold cathode fluorescent lamp in a floating configuration with an inverter circuit having a transformer with a primary winding and two secondary windings. At least one sense resistor is coupled in series between terminals of the secondary windings. The other terminal of each secondary winding is coupled to a respective end of the fluorescent lamp. A rectifier is coupled to the secondary portion of the transformer to receive a signal indicative of the current in at least one end of the fluorescent lamp and generates a feedback signal. A control and drive circuit generates drive signals based on the feedback signal to control the current in the fluorescent lamp and outputs the drive signals to the primary transformer winding.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2000
    Assignee: Dell Computer Corporation
    Inventors: Barry K. Kates, John Cummings
  • Patent number: 6127786
    Abstract: A ballast includes a resonant inverter circuit which limits the voltage applied to a lamp when it fails to light. In one embodiment, the inverter includes first and second switching element having conduction states controlled by respective first and second control circuits. The second control circuit includes a third switching element which controls the conduction state of the second switching element. An end of life circuit includes a first threshold circuit coupled to the third switching element for disabling the inverter when the voltage applied to the lamp becomes greater than a first predetermined threshold. In another embodiment, the second control circuit includes a fourth switching element for controlling a duty cycle of the third switching element and the end of life circuit includes a second threshold circuit. When the lamp voltage becomes greater than a second predetermined threshold, the fourth switching element reduces the duty cycle of the third switching element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2000
    Assignee: Electro-Mag International, Inc.
    Inventor: Mihail S. Moisin
  • Patent number: 6127789
    Abstract: Provided is an apparatus for controlling the power supplied to a discharge lamp by detecting the voltage and current of the lamp's electric supply line. A microcomputer monitors power consumption of the discharge lamp by multiplying the voltage and current detected in the supple line to determine the input power and produces a representative control signal. The actual input power is compared with a preset input power, based upon the signal, and the power consumption of the discharge lamp is controlled in accordance with the results of the comparison.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2000
    Assignee: Toshiba Lighting & Technology Corp.
    Inventors: Akio Ishizuka, Kiyoshi Minegishi, Akihiro Ueda
  • Patent number: 6127788
    Abstract: In a discharge lamp control circuit for a discharge lamp mounted on a vehicle, a capacitor in a starting circuit is charged by a high voltage generated by a transformer used in a direct current power source circuit. A transformer necessary for the starting circuit and the transformer necessary for the direct current power source circuit can commonly be used for cost reduction. Further, a thyristor is used in the starting circuit in place of a gap for activating the discharge lamp.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 14, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2000
    Assignee: Denso Corporation
    Inventors: Noboru Yamamoto, Kenji Yoneima
  • Patent number: 6121731
    Abstract: A lighting system for a fluorescent lamp includes an inverter circuit to which is connected a load circuit including a resonant circuit of an inductor and a capacitor in serial connection, with a lamp connected in parallel with the capacitor. An inversely frequency dependent voltage is applied between the lamp electrodes according to a predefined resonance characteristic such that the resonance frequency is less than a discharge start frequency at which the lamp is to start glowing. For lighting up the lamp the frequency of the inverter output voltage is changed from a first frequency that is higher than the discharge start frequency to a second frequency that is less than the resonance frequency. If the lamp accidentally goes off, the current flowing through the load circuit will advance out of phase with the inverter output voltage, possibly resulting in the destruction of the inverter switch or switches due to overcurrent.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2000
    Assignee: Sanken Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masaki Kanazawa, Hironobu Sou, Hideki Nakamichi, Nanjou Aoike
  • Patent number: 6121733
    Abstract: Unfiltered full-wave-rectified 60 Hz power line voltage is supplied to a first self-oscillating series-resonance-loaded inverter, the high frequency output current from which is magnitude-controlled, rectified and used for maintaining a substantially constant-magnitude DC voltage on an energy-storing capacitor. This constant-magnitude DC voltage is used in combination with the unfiltered full-wave-rectified 60 Hz power line voltage for powering a second self-oscillating series-resonance-loaded inverter, the high frequency current output from which is used for powering a fluorescent lamp load. By frequency-modulating the first inverter at a 120 Hz rate, the current drawn from the power line is made to be of such waveshape as to result in a power factor well in excess of 90% while at the same time having a content of under 20% of odd triplets of third harmonic currents. The high frequency current provided to the fluorescent lamp load has a crest factor not in excess of 1.7.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 1994
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2000
    Inventor: Ole K. Nilssen
  • Patent number: 6118223
    Abstract: The invention relates to a lamp arrangement having a resonant circuit arrangement that is balanced and has two LC series circuits each connected between a respective inverter output terminal and a lamp terminal. The two inductive elements being coupled together via a single core.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 12, 2000
    Assignee: MagneTek, Inc.
    Inventor: Antonio Canova
  • Patent number: 6118228
    Abstract: A high-frequency filtered dimmable electronic ballast circuit for powering low-pressure fluorescent lamps includes an input protection device; a radio-frequency filter connected to an output of the input protection device; a rectifier connected to an output of the radio-frequency filter; a power factor correcting switching power supply device connected to an output of the rectifier; a current controlled push-pull converter connected to an output of the switching power supply device; a series-parallel resonant filter composed of a capacitor in series with two inductors having a common connection in parallel with an additional capacitor connected to an output of the push-pull converter to maintain voltage wave forms essentially sinusoidal and of constant amplitude regardless of loading; a fluorescent lamp connected to an output of the resonant filter; and an external on/off switching circuit connected directly or by an optical or magnetic insulation device to an input of the push-pull converter for renotely tur
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 12, 2000
    Inventor: Sandor Pal
  • Patent number: 6118225
    Abstract: A circuit arrangement comprising a DC-AC converter for operating a lamp (La). A first capacitor is connected across first and second inputs of the DC-AC converter. A first coil and a second capacitor are connected in a series circuit to first and second outputs of a rectifier circuit coupled to an AC supply voltage. Two diodes are serially connected between the first output and the first input. A third capacitor is connected between a junction point of the two diodes and a junction point between two series connected transistors of the DC-AC converter. The diodes, the coil (L1) and the second and third capacitors (C2, C3) are so dimensioned that the resonance frequency of a series circuit of the coil and the second and third capacitors connected in parallel is approximately equal to the operating frequency of the DC-Ac converter. As a result, the circuit arrangement has a high power factor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 15, 1995
    Date of Patent: September 12, 2000
    Assignee: U.S. Philips Corporation
    Inventor: Johannes H. Wessels
  • Patent number: 6111365
    Abstract: An electronic ballast includes a zener diode in series with the bulk capacitor of the ballast to provide a charging voltage for a small capacitor that powers a power factor correction circuit within the ballast. A SCR in parallel with the zener diode shuts off the zener diode after the power factor correction circuit begins operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 1999
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2000
    Assignee: Energy Savings, Inc.
    Inventors: Grigoriy Mirskiy, Michael W. Bandel, Kent E. Crouse, Peter W. Shackle
  • Patent number: 6107751
    Abstract: A circuit for supplying AC voltage and current to a gaseous discharge lamp upon the application of DC voltage and current, the circuit comprising: a transformer including a first and a second primary windings; a first capacitance means, coupled across the primary windings to define a resonant circuit; a start-up current source coupled to a drive terminal; first and second transistors coupled to the drive terminal; at least one drive winding coupled on one end to the drive terminal and coupled on the other end to the base of one of the transistors; and first and second current-blocking devices, in one embodiment a diode and in another embodiment a transistor, each current-blocking device configured so as to block a current from flowing into the emitter element of one of the transistors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 1, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2000
    Inventor: Keith Billings
  • Patent number: 6107756
    Abstract: A low-voltage landscape lighting system having a stepdown transformer having a predetermined power rating and primary and secondary windings with said primary windings. The primary winding is adapted for connection to an AC supply source and the secondary winding being adapted for connection to a low-voltage outdoor power distribution cable and a plurality of lamp fixtures electrically connected to the power distribution cable. A number of low-voltage, non-thermionic, ballast-free fluorescent light sub-systems are connected to the distribution cables. Each has a fluorescent discharge lamp with electrodes spaced in a gaseous medium, a light transmissive envelope confining a gaseous discharge medium at a predetermined pressure between the electrodes. A power supply including a rectifier connected to the power distribution cable and constituting a direct current source is connected to a solid state switch device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2000
    Inventor: Jorge M. Parra
  • Patent number: 6107749
    Abstract: In a power-line-operated high-frequency electronic ballast, a half-bridge inverter is powered from a DC supply voltage and a fluorescent lamp is connected with the inverter's more-or-less asymmetrical squarewave output voltage by way of a of a series-resonant L-C circuit. The amount of power supplied by the inverter to the series-resonant L-C circuit and/or to the fluorescent lamp at any given moment depends on four significant factors: (i) the instantaneous magnitude of the DC supply voltage, (ii) the instantaneous frequency of the inverter's squarewave output voltage, (iii) the symmetry of the inverter's squarewave output voltage (which determines the effective magnitude of of its fundamental frequency voltage component), and (iv) the instantaneous operational characteristics of the fluorescent lamp.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2000
    Inventor: Ole K. Nilssen
  • Patent number: 6104145
    Abstract: An AC discharge lamp having a constricted arc, and powered through a unidirectional ballast with a unidirectional current, is described. The AC lamp operates as a DC lamp. One method of achieving the constriction of the arc of this lamp is to modulate the DC input power to the discharge lamp to reduce the adverse effects of DC operation. The mechanism mixes the chemicals with an acoustically induced flow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2000
    Assignee: Osram Sylvania Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph A. Olsen, Warren P. Moskowitz
  • Patent number: 6100647
    Abstract: An electronic ballast for an electron discharge lamp includes a resonant inverter driven by a high frequency switching signal supplied by a drive circuit which is substantially comprised in an integrated circuit, the lamp being connected in an output circuit of the inverter and powered thereby. The lamp intensity is controlled by changing the switching signal frequency, thereby changing the power supplied to the lamp. In order to prevent parasitic capacitance of remote wiring between the ballast and the lamp from causing inaccuracies in determination of the power being supplied to the lamp, the ballast takes into account the phase difference between lamp current and voltage in making such determination. For example, by deriving the product of rectified lamp voltage and rectified lamp current, and using the arithmetic summation of such products during each operating cycle as a measure of lamp power.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2000
    Assignee: Philips Electronics North America Corp.
    Inventors: Demetri J. Giannopoulos, Ihor T. Wacyk, Sreeraman Venkitasubrahmanian
  • Patent number: 6100646
    Abstract: A ballast feedback scheme including a single stage current feedback inverter. To avoid overboosting of the voltage impressed across a buffer capacitor only a portion of the high frequency lamp current is fedback to the buffer capacitor during both ignition and steady state operation of the lamp. Ignition of the lamp is well controlled.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2000
    Assignee: Philips Electronics North America Corporation
    Inventors: Jerzy Janczak, Adan F. Hernandez
  • Patent number: 6100652
    Abstract: A ballast (10) for powering a discharge lamp (20) comprises an output circuit (300) and a lamp starting circuit (400). The output circuit (300) includes a resonant inductor (310), a resonant capacitor (312), and a direct current (DC) blocking capacitor (314). Lamp starting circuit (400) is magnetically coupled to the resonant inductor (310) and supplies charging current to the DC blocking capacitor (314). The resulting high voltage that is developed across the DC blocking capacitor (314) ignites the lamp (20). In a preferred embodiment, lamp starting circuit (400) includes a starting winding (402), a current-limiting capacitor (406), a first rectifier (410), and a second rectifier (416).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2000
    Assignee: Osram Sylvania Inc.
    Inventor: John G. Konopka
  • Patent number: 6091207
    Abstract: A pump supporting inductor (L1) is added to a half-bridge oscillator circ for a low-pressure discharge lamp (E) having a capacitive pump path, which inductor improves the pumping action of the pump path and its frequency response. Furthermore, an additional capacitor (C1) is connected between the pump path and the power supply path connected thereto, which capacitor acts as a trapezoidal capacitor in conjunction with the pump path and further improves the frequency response of the pump path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2000
    Assignee: Patent-Treuhand-Gesellschaft fuer elektrische Gluelampen mbH
    Inventor: Klaus Fischer
  • Patent number: 6091210
    Abstract: An electronic ballast for gas lamp loads, such as ionized lamps, that includes a boost power factor correction used to correct the power factor and minimize the total harmonic distortion. The boost includes an inductor that periodically stores and discharges its resulting voltage in a charging capacitor through an optional bypass diode connected in parallel with an electronic switch using the oscillator that is applied to the load. The addition of the bypass diode decreases the total harmonic distortion. The inductor is selected, in combination with the rest of the circuit, so that it never reaches saturation. The inductor periodically charges the charging capacitor above (twice) the peak voltage that is supplied by a rectified continuous source of direct voltage. The high intensity discharge load is connected to a suitable resonant circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 1, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2000
    Inventor: Alejandro Cavolina
  • Patent number: 6087776
    Abstract: A discharge lamp lighting circuit which, in turning on a discharge lamp, when an abnormal condition occurs in a discharge lamp or in the present discharge lamp lighting circuit due to a transient cause, can resume the power supply to the discharge lamp at the time when the present transient abnormal condition cause disappears. The discharge lamp lighting circuit includes lighting control for controlling the lighting of a discharge lamp, an abnormal condition detector for detecting an abnormal condition occurring in the discharge lamp or in the discharge lamp lighting circuit, and a protection circuit which receives a signal from the abnormal condition detector to thereby stop the power supply to the discharge lamp. The protection circuit is composed of first protection unit and second protection unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: Koito Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Masayasu Yamashita, Atsushi Toda, Jun Yabuzaki
  • Patent number: 6088249
    Abstract: A frequency dependent controller utilizes a loosely coupled transformer, which controller is adapted to change the operating characteristics of the transformer by varying its operating frequency in accordance with the requirements of a load to be supplied with power. If the transformer is operated at a single frequency, the maximum current that can be delivered is limited by the reactance of the transformer. If the transformer is operated over a frequency range by the controller, the maximum current and other operating characteristics of the transformer are a function of both the magnetic shunt and its then current operating frequency. Frequency control of a loosely coupled transformer permits precision electronic regulation of the transformer's operating characteristics and is suitable for control of a variety of devices, such as gas discharge lamps, DC to DC converters, AC to DC power and high voltage supplies, motor control and variable heaters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 21, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: Power Circuit Innovations, Inc.
    Inventor: Hugh Patrick Adamson
  • Patent number: 6084361
    Abstract: A circuit arrangement for supplying a discharge lamp, comprising a converter for generating a high-frequency current with a frequency f from a supply voltage. The converter comprises at least one switching element which is rendered alternately conducting and non-conducting at the frequency f while the discharge lamp is being supplied. In addition a circuit portion I is provided for the low-frequency modulation of the power consumed by the discharge lamp through an adjustment of the conduction period of the switching element. As a result, instabilities in the discharge lamp plasma, such as striations and moding, are suppressed to a considerable degree.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2000
    Assignee: U.S. Philips Corporation
    Inventor: Ihor T. Wacyk
  • Patent number: 6081075
    Abstract: A switching circuit is provided for converting a DC voltage to an AC voltage required for driving an electroluminescent lamp. The switching circuit charges and discharges the electroluminescent lamp with a substantially constant current to thereby reduce peak currents and extend lamp life. A constant current discharge feature of the switching circuit results in a significant reduction in current consumption.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2000
    Assignee: Toko, Inc.
    Inventor: Troy J. Littlefield
  • Patent number: 6078149
    Abstract: A device for operating a gas discharge lamp has a d.c.-d.c. converter which converts an input voltage based on a reference potential into two output potentials different from the reference potential. The gas discharge lamp is brought by a drive circuit to these output potentials having different absolute values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 17, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: Robert Bosch GmbH
    Inventors: Karl-Heinrich Preis, Robert Kern
  • Patent number: 6078144
    Abstract: The electronic ballast has a rectifier arrangement (1)--which is fed by AC power supply voltage (U)--with active step-up converter (SW2), a storage capacitor (C2), a network for limiting an inrush current and two outputs, at which a stabilized DC voltage (U+) referred to housing ground as reference potential (Uref) is output. An inverter (2) is connected to the rectifier arrangement, a load circuit (3) with at least one fluorescent lamp (La1 and/or La2) being assigned to said inverter on the output side. The inverter has a converter network (T1/1, T1/2, C1, SW3, SW4), preferably designed as a push-pull circuit, with two bridge paths, which, in the steady-state operating condition, are alternatively switched through to the reference potential. In this case, the switching network for limiting the inrush current comprises a limiting resistor (R1), which, in series with the storage capacitor (C2), is connected to reference potential.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 2, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: Patent-Treuhand-Gesellschaft fuer elektrische Gluehlampen mbH
    Inventor: Rene Twardzik
  • Patent number: 6078143
    Abstract: A ballast circuit for a gas discharge lamp includes a d.c.-to-a.c. converter circuit with circuitry for coupling to a resonant load circuit, for inducing a.c. current therein. The converter circuit comprises a pair of switches serially connected between a bus conductor at a d.c. voltage and a reference conductor, the voltage between a reference node and a control node of each switch determining the conduction state of the associated switch. The respective reference nodes of said switches are connected together at a common node through which said a.c. current flows, and the respective control nodes of the switches are connected together. A gate drive arrangement is provided for regeneratively controlling the first and second switches.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventor: Louis R. Nerone
  • Patent number: 6078147
    Abstract: A circuit for supplying a discharge lamp, comprising a converter for generating a high-frequency current at a frequency f from a supply voltage and a circuit portion I for adjusting the power consumed by the discharge lamp through adjustment of the frequency. The circuit portion I is provided with a circuit portion II for low-frequency square-wave modulation of the frequency f and for the adjustment of the duty cycle of the square-wave modulation. As a result, the discharge lamp can be dimmed over a very wide range without striations or moding occurring and without undesirable shifts in the color point of the light.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: U.S. Philips Corporation
    Inventors: Paulus P. B. Arts, Arnold W. Buij, Etienne N. K. P. M. Eberson
  • Patent number: 6072284
    Abstract: A compact fluorescent lamp and an electronic ballast therefor are mounted on a three-terminal base which can be fitted into a three-way-switched standard AC lamp socket, so as to be responsive to the three powered switch positions of the socket for generating three light output levels. The ballast includes an AC-to-DC conversion circuit which supplies a lamp driver including a DC-to-AC conversion circuit, an oscillatory circuit and a resonant circuit. In one embodiment the AC-to-DC conversion circuit includes a full bridge rectifier and a voltage doubler producing two operating voltage levels for the lamp driver and two frequency control voltage levels for the oscillator, the ballast generating three light output levels by using two operating voltages and two operating frequencies.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 20, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2000
    Assignee: Duro-Test Corporation
    Inventor: Lin Lin
  • Patent number: 6072283
    Abstract: The present invention is related to a micro-controller-operated high intensity discharge lamp ballast system. This system comprises the following elements: a boost pre-regulator means to convert a DC voltage into a high voltage DC bus to facilitate proper lamp power regulation, an inverter means to convert the high voltage DC bus into a high frequency FM modulated square wave voltage, a lamp matching network and filter means to convert the high frequency FM modulated square wave voltage into a high frequency FM modulated current facilitating the proper lamp power regulation, a lamp current and voltage sensing means to sense a lamp voltage and a lamp current across the high intensity discharge lamp and to feed the lamp voltage and lamp current into a micro-controller means adapted to facilitate proper functioning of the high intensity discharge lamp ballast system by means of sending a predetermined set of commands provided to monitor and control all elements of this system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 24, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2000
    Assignee: Transformateurs Transfab Inc.
    Inventors: George C. Hedrei, Nicolas St-Germain
  • Patent number: 6069458
    Abstract: This invention is to provide an inexpensive high intensity discharge lamp lighting device having a simplified circuit construction, which does not use a full-bridge mode inverter. The high intensity discharge lamp lighting device includes a rectifier for a power-frequency power supply, a booster chopper mode sine wave converter, a zero volt switching push pull inverter, and a high intensity lamp of a halide lamp. And, as a starting device for the halide lamp, the high intensity discharge lamp lighting device generates a high voltage (5 KV) using a resonance by a ballast choke for the inverter and a condenser connected in parallel to the halide lamp, thereby inducing a glow discharge. And, a PFM (pulse frequency modulation) circuit controls the lamp current of the halide lamp to keep it constant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2000
    Assignee: Minebea Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Takao Takehara, Masashi Norizuki
  • Patent number: 6069453
    Abstract: A circuit for operating a discharge lamp from input terminals of a low frequency (f) supply voltage source with a rectifier coupled to the input terminals for rectifying the low-frequency supply voltage. A capacitor is coupled to the output of the rectifier. A DC-AC converter is coupled to the capacitor for generating a lamp current which comprises a DC component and a high-frequency AC component, the amplitude of the high-frequency AC component being modulated with a low frequency which is equal to twice the frequency f. An apparatus (V) adjusts the lamp power. The circuit parameters are chosen such that during operation the average amplitude of the high-frequency lamp current component is at least 500 times the amplitude of the low-frequency modulation of the high-frequency lamp current component with the power set for its maximum adjustable value. As a result, the discharge lamp can be dimmed over a wide range without striations occurring.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2000
    Assignee: U.S. Philips Corporation
    Inventors: Paulus P. B. Arts, Marcel Beij, Arnold W. Buij