Incredible Luminosity in a Portable Package

If you’ve ever wanted to bring the brightest day into the blackest night, this flashlight shall give you sight. With a 100W LED array powered by up to 32V, this thing is exceedingly bright — it clocks in at about 9000 lumens! But the best part is that all every little detail of the build was documented along the way so that we can tag along for the ride.

The all-aluminium case houses the LEDs and their heat sink, voltage regulator and display, the AD and DC adapter and converter boards and their connectors, and fans to ensure adequate ventilation. It’s powered by a custom-assembled 6400 mAh 11.1V lipo battery or DC 20V 10Amp power supply via XLR for rugged, locking connection. The battery pack connection was vacuum formed for quick-swapping, and the pack itself will sound off an alert if any of the three batteries inside the pack run out of power. A nifty added feature is the ability to check the remaining charge — especially useful if you’re looking to bring this uncommonly powerful flashlight along on camping trips or other excursions.

All the components of the light and battery fit snugly inside their cases — an efficiency in design that we at Hackaday love to see once in a while. Don’t forget to check out its big brother, and even bigger brother,

[via /r/DIY]

25 thoughts on “Incredible Luminosity in a Portable Package

  1. Cool. But “powered by 32 volts”. You folks have got to figure out some day what “power” means in physics and electronics. Powered by a Pi. Powered by an Arduino. Right. Maybe a bunch of burning Pi’s in a boiler!

    :-)

  2. I agree with you in spirit – “powered” is so heavily abused, like “hero” – but it’s not as wrong in this case as you’re making it sound. “Powered by an Arduino” means that an Arduino is what makes something run, much like “Powered by a small block 350” makes a hotrod move. It’s a stretch but we do this all time. If the article had said “Uses 32 volts of power” in the same way that the cordless tools at the box store use the phrase then I’d be right with you. I read ‘powered by 32 volts’ as meaning ‘powered by a 32 volt battery’ as I think most people do. That doesn’t begin to tell the story – how much power is that 32 volt battery delivering? I’d hope that HAD knows better than to make the Black & Decker or Ryobi blunder of saying that a 20V cordless tool has 11% more power than an 18V. If the world can’t count on HAD for accuracy, what hope for the future do we have?

  3. While we are being pedantic-the ‘lumonisity’ (commonly accepted to refer to the amount of light per solid angle projected on a unit area) is actually quite low on this source, only a few thousand (maybe 10,000 at close range) lux. Compare to your typical 5mw laser pointer which can easily be in excess of a million lux.

    It does have a decent amount of luminous flux though!

    1. Better check your own pedantry before going public with it. Spelling error aside, you’re incorrect. Luminosity is more-or-less correctly used in TFA, referring to the total luminous power (lumens) the source produces (though it’s usually assumed to be over 4pi steradians, like a star or other point source.) It’s also synonymous with [total] luminous flux.

      You are confusing luminosity (in lumens) with luminous intensity (lumens per steradian) with illuminance (lux = lumens per square meter).

      But your numbers are in line. Sunlight is around 100,000 lux. This 9000 lumen light will produce 1500 lux at one meter, naively assuming even distribution over a hemisphere (~6 steradians).

      And, yes, a 5 mW laser pointer (in green anyway) puts out about 3 lumens over a couple of milliradians, equating to around a million lumens per steradian, or a million lux at one meter, 10x sunlight (and more if it’s closer or focussed).

      1. Even if you insist on using the astronomical definition (which is clearly misleading when talking about a flashlight) the statement is not particularly accurate, since this source only emits about 5watts of total radiated power (with the remaining power being dissipated in the heatsink and not being directed toward the target). A decent maglite has a 10w incandescent bulb, and nearly all of that power is radiated so it has a comparable if not higher luminosity (astronomical definition).

        1. Not correct. 5 watts of radiated power to produce the advertised 9000 lumens (i.e., 1800 lumens per watt) is physically impossible. The absolute maximum possible luminous efficacy is about 650 Lm/W, for monochromatic green light. For the white-ish spectrum from an LED it’s more like 250-300 Lm/W, implying there’s about (9000 Lm/300 Lm/W) = 30 W of light power coming out of that LED. For its input power of 100W, that’s 30% efficient, dumping 70 W into the heatsink.

          And sure, a 3000K blackbody Maglite filament might radiate away most of its input power, but the vast majority of that radiant power is in the infrared and not actual useful lumens. It’s luminous efficacy is closer to 30 Lm/W. A disingenuous comparison.

          1. These seem to be too high lm/W numbers. LEDs are in the range of 100lm/W up to 150lm/W for very good parts. Incandescent bulbs are in the range of 7lm/W (230V/25W) over 13,8lm/W (230V/100W) up to 20lm/W (low voltage halogen bulbs).

          2. Note the numbers I state are NOT LED efficiency, but luminous efficacy = how many lumens, or amount of visible light, per watt of *photons*. Light in the green appears brighter, watt for watt, than red or blue or white light.

            Of course LEDs are not 100% efficient, so some other their input watts don’t turn into watts of photons coming out. So even if their spectrum might have a luminous efficacy of 300 lumens per watt, their actual efficiency is closer to 100 (or 90 for this example) lumens per watt.

  4. Cool. Started making a light of this caliber a while ago. I will say that no matter which way you look at the specs it is bright. Was using the mid sized luxeon cobs and due to my curiosity and excitement getting the better or me i blinded my self a couple of times for about 15 minutes each time. Was worse than sun glare off of chrome, my whole field of view was whited out.

    The only suggestions i have are that a smaller heatsink can be used. Was using a standard second gen i7 stock cooler and it maintened low temperatures well. The other is if they make a reflector for that led use it. With the reflector i could light up somebody clear as day from over 200 ft away.

    1. Agreed. Other than missing a fuse, but maybe the battery has enough protection.

      I think he should have called it “Galvanick Lucipher” instead of “The Beast”
      (From Stephenson’s “Cryptonomicon” if you’re scratching your head)

  5. If its the same voltmeter as I used it has a linear regulator on so wastes a lot (depending on how you look at it!) of power. Mine was a red led display and drawing 28ma @ 21v, I put replaced the linear reg with a buck converter and then it drew 8ma. Obviously if the voltmeter is only on when powering this light it will not be a significant load.

    1. You could power it directly from the battery instead from the measurement voltage. And btw. then you could measure LED current instead of LED voltage, which is rather meaningless in itself. Or switch between battery voltage (rough estimation of state of charge) and LED current.

    1. They would just run that much faster into your headlights. The best light for deer is none at all, just noises. Scored one this spring. State highway, planting time. I passed 7 ammonia rigs on that trip. Two deer, second in line…Bam…bi!
      I would like to harness some of that 4th of July fireworks as sonic flares like combat jets use to foil heat seeking missiles. To bad it ain’t legal. It sure would be fun. Shooting off “flares” at every brush and vale! They do know what bang means.

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