Storacell
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 39

Thread: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

  1. #1
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Hi,

    I made two diffusers:

    a) a room light. stick an LED flashlight under it and it lights up the entire room.
    I used a TechLight LumenMaster as a mule for this, and 1 pint of Aerogel grains in
    a clear plastic bottle container.

    b) diffuser inside the LED light bezel for flood.
    used a Mag 2xAA with NiteIze mod, and stuffed grains directly on the emitter
    and filled it up to the glass.


    Both diffusers barely decreased luminosity, if at all....and had zero artifacts. These work amazingly well.
    I used silica aerogel 2nm sphere in 100nm pore clusters, ground up into .1mm-1mm size random grains.

    The aerogel is optically pure on the nano-scale, and with all the spheres, pores, and grains...the light really spreads
    everywhere perfectly and with absolutely zero artifacts.


    I would post pictures but the forum won't allow me to.

    Anyone else used Aerogel ? I am not kidding when I say...this might be the -absolute best way- to diffuse LED emitters.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    I have a liter of granular aerogel sitting around, but I'm having a hard time picturing how you created a diffuser from it. Just keep posting and eventually you'll be able to post pictures.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    easy.

    static-free environment (or have a vac handy)

    open bezel to expose reflector and emitter...dump in a mound of grains...just a little bit heaping...squash bezel back together...presto !

    in production I'd envision a drop-in reflector replacement which is pre-packed. an aerogel diffuser will not be
    small and thin and bendy, it would either need to be a pre-packed reflector assembly or a glass sandwich 5mm thick.

    I did it on a whim, and was pretty surprised ay how much light is not lost, yet perfectly diffused

  4. #4

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Interesting. Any pic ? Did you measure the light loss ?

  5. #5
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    I have pics, but am not allow to post them yet. I did not measure light loss with proper equipment.
    Even though I have 1cm of aerogel in the bezel I can still peek through it and tell there is a yellow puddle emitter in there.
    Aerogel does odd stuff with light that passes though it. Far different that what a bunch of broken glass chunks would
    do to light, [which is what aerogel grains are essentially...a bunch of broken glass], but with billions of nanoscale spheres and pores.

    if someone did choose to use it as diffuser material, it is bulky and a bit messy, so I am not saying that -the installation of it-
    is ideal, but the diffusion it creates I think is ideal due to how little it impedes lux.

  6. #6
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    715

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Nobody is allowed to attach pics on CPF. You need to upload them to an image hoster and put the pic's url between [IMG] [/lMG] tags.
    Note the maximum allowed size is 800x600 pixels.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator
    DM51's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Borg cube #51
    Posts
    13,341

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by Helmut.G View Post
    Nobody is allowed to attach pics on CPF. You need to upload them to an image hoster and put the pic's url between [IMG] [/lMG] tags.
    Note the maximum allowed size is 800x600 pixels.
    Correct!

    Anyone can post pics - use Photobucket, flickr or one of the other hosting sites. See this thread on how to do it.
    Resistance is futile...

  8. #8
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    nope, can't be linking to images. can't be creating albums on other sites. Oh well, no pics then. sorry for the bother.

  9. #9
    Flashaholic* AnAppleSnail's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    South Hill, VA
    Posts
    3,912

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by 127.0.0.1 View Post
    nope, can't be linking to images. can't be creating albums on other sites. Oh well, no pics then. sorry for the bother.
    I suggest Imgur.com for easy linking.
    My biggest light-hog is my camera.

  10. #10
    Flashaholic
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    251

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    I was thinking about using glass microspheres in parafin in a lamp project as a diffuser, but this stuff sounds way better. Now to find if I can buy it!

  11. #11
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    United Nuclear will sell a jug of this stuff

    http://unitednuclear.com/index.php?m...eyword=aerogel


    I will go check Imgur and see if I can post pics.

    In the meantime, guess what I have been up to ? Talking to Fred, and he is gonna design me a light.

    I might be a noob but I think I am a flashaholic
    Last edited by 127.0.0.1; 01-07-2012 at 05:21 AM.

  12. #12
    Flashaholic* AnAppleSnail's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    South Hill, VA
    Posts
    3,912

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by 127.0.0.1 View Post
    United Nuclear will sell a jug of this stuff

    http://unitednuclear.com/index.php?m...eyword=aerogel


    I will go check Imgur and see if I can post pics.

    In the meantime, guess what I have been up to ? Talking to Fred, and he is gonna design me a light.

    I might be a noob but I think I am a flashaholic
    Everyone is welcome here. If you have a digital camera, you could try this semi-useful brightness test:

    Mount the camera on a tripod. Take a picture of a room with the flashlight shining on the ceiling. Note the exposure time.

    Pack the aerogel dust in. Do the same procedure.

    ASSuming the auto exposure has some sense, then:
    -The ratio of exposure times tells us the relative brightness

    You can look at the .exif data (right-click, info, 'more info' or something) to see the exposure time of the digital file.
    My biggest light-hog is my camera.

  13. #13
    Flashaholic bob4apple's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Poughquag, NY
    Posts
    232

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Hmmmm....I've seen aerogel demonstrated as the world's best insulator, with a blowtorch touching
    a thin slice of areogel, and a hand touching the other side, with no harm done.

    So I'm thinking it may prevent heat from escaping upwards, away from the LED, if you pack that
    aerogel dust against it. How important that particular thermal pathway is in any particular flashlight,
    I surely wouldn't know.
    When you die and go "into the light",
    don't complain about the tint!

  14. #14
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    ^right

    I don't plan on using my light for long burntimes, but you have a point

    how much heat needs to dissipate off the emitter that doesn't go through the heatsink
    would be a consideration for a diffuser that butts up against the emitter. I don't think
    any serious diffuser would touch the emitter, but for the common hobo doing this
    in the backroom...good question

  15. #15
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    594

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by 127.0.0.1 View Post
    In the meantime, guess what I have been up to ? Talking to Fred, and he is gonna design me a light.
    Wait - who is "Fred"?

  16. #16
    Flashaholic* kaichu dento's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    大和/Alyeska
    Posts
    4,827

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by 127.0.0.1 View Post
    how much heat needs to dissipate off the emitter that doesn't go through the heatsink
    would be a consideration for a diffuser that butts up against the emitter. I don't think
    any serious diffuser would touch the emitter, but for the common hobo doing this
    in the backroom...good question
    I'm sure that it's okay to do these as you are with no concern for heat entrapment, as that function is being carried out through the base of the emitter and whatever heat does escape atmospherically would be inconsequential compared to the physical coupling at the base.
    Marduke - Solitaire...I've seen matches which are brighter AND have a longer runtime. 光陰矢の如し

  17. #17
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    <Wait - who is "Fred"? >

    @shane45 1911 PhotonFanatic

  18. #18
    Flashaholic bob4apple's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Poughquag, NY
    Posts
    232

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    I'm sure that it's okay to do these as you are with no concern for heat entrapment, as that function is being carried out through the base of the emitter and whatever heat does escape atmospherically would be inconsequential compared to the physical coupling at the base.
    Maybe, but the only way to be absolutely sure is to test. In effect, by blocking heat escape from the front, the emitter base will have to deal with
    more heat than before, and many flashlights are already operating beyond safe heat limits.

    Anyway, I'm glad for the experiments with high tech diffusion material. I'm tempted to try it out with a cheap light that will
    volunteer to donate its LED to science in case anything goes wrong.
    When you die and go "into the light",
    don't complain about the tint!

  19. #19
    Flashaholic* kaichu dento's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    大和/Alyeska
    Posts
    4,827

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by bob4apple View Post
    Maybe, but the only way to be absolutely sure is to test. In effect, by blocking heat escape from the front, the emitter base will have to deal with
    more heat than before, and many flashlights are already operating beyond safe heat limits.

    Anyway, I'm glad for the experiments with high tech diffusion material. I'm tempted to try it out with a cheap light that will
    volunteer to donate its LED to science in case anything goes wrong.
    I highly doubt that there is any significant amount of heat being exuded through the air trapped inside the lens.
    Marduke - Solitaire...I've seen matches which are brighter AND have a longer runtime. 光陰矢の如し

  20. #20
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    OK

    holy crap imgur is simple
    ----
    picture inside the maglite head, you can just tell it is chunks of aerogel

    picture of the hobo room lantern with techlite lumenmaster as a base, on low, lights up the whole kitchen

    picture of the diffusion from the maglite against my basement wall, pretty even compared to non-diffused

    I do not have light measuring equipment, but I could not tell the light was reduced at all, except the hotspot was removed
    Last edited by 127.0.0.1; 03-05-2012 at 10:24 PM.

  21. #21
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Thrunite TN-11

    Note: these two pix are with the light off.
    The apparent brightness of the aerogel is due to normal ceiling lighting bouncing around inside there.


    kills the throw, turns to 100% flood with about the reach of a peak vesuvius
    Last edited by 127.0.0.1; 03-05-2012 at 06:52 PM.
    posted by jh333233
    Dont cheat me, im expert in using crap light

  22. #22
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    pix
    Thrunite held horizontally 1deg elevation camera 1 inch above and 2 inches behind Bezel

    Thrunite TN11, 3xcr123, high mode, no diffuser

    Thrunite TN11, 3xcr123, high mode, aerogel
    is this a flood or what ?

    Thrunite TN11, 3xcr123, high mode, no diffuser

    Thrunite TN11, 3xcr123, high mode, aerogel
    posted by jh333233
    Dont cheat me, im expert in using crap light

  23. #23
    Flashaholic* mrlysle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    West Virginia
    Posts
    649

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Dang dude! That stuff really does do an awesome job! Me personally though? I really like the DC fix diffusion film from Phaserburn. I too, would be concerned about holding heat, no matter how trivial it seemed. Especially when it's touted as being such a good insulator. On any light that was under driven, it probably wouldn't be a problem. But with any light that got pretty warm after just a minute or two on high, I wouldn't want to pack insulation all around the emitter. I'm sure that stuff is fun to play with though! It does do a super job at diffusion! Thanks for the pics!
    Jeff

  24. #24
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    HA !


    I discovered something else which is actually too good to be true !

    I bought a cheap chinese bike light for

    a) to test
    b) sick of paying high dollars for Niterider (now I am on CPF and know better)
    c) don't need fancy modes, just bright and a low.
    d) 18650 x 3 driven, so i can replace the cells with protected ones once these lose life after some years
    e) 800 lumens is enough. I go really fast in the woods (yes I race) and know that I don't need more
    than 800 lumens, personally.


    so I got a Shadow BL21 single XML, 800 lumen, to replace my Niterider trinewt.
    The BL21 is balanced (doesn't droop on hard hits and drops) and the whole assembly (light and battery) weighs 1/3rd the
    trinewt + battery

    Problem. The BL21 is too narrow, needs more flood for the slow sketchy sections.

    So, I stuffed in aerogel all the way up, and it flooded, but lost it's reach. So I had an idea...only put in enough aerogel
    grains to fill 1/2 the reflector. Bada-BING ! I now have up front flood and the beam still reaches as deep in the woods as with no aerogel at all.

    The Perfect Diffuser has been found ! Fill your reflector 1/2 full of loose aerogel grains and
    let them roll around. The beam will be floody and with deep reach all in one ! and you do not
    see anything like artifacts in the beam. the aerogel diffuses light so perfectly it just
    makes the whole beam smooth regardless of how many bumps it takes, it doesn't matter !and yes you
    now have a light with what looks like Ghost boogers rolling around in the reflector. [haters may hate!]

    somewhat like an 'active diffuser system' !


    All my existing and future bike lights will get the 1/2 aerogel treatment ! and I will also dump some
    into my Thrunite TN11 so I can get all the reach and now some upfront flood. NO compromise !!!!


    I do wonder if: will the aerogel scour the reflector over time ? well, I am gonna find out and post
    my results in a few months once my rides start requiring lights...so far I can get back home at dark-thirty
    every night, and do not yet need a light, or I use my backup zebralight H600w I carry in my camelbak


    (damn my fingertips are dried out from playing with the aerogel that spilled on the countertop)
    Last edited by 127.0.0.1; 07-17-2012 at 06:51 AM.
    posted by jh333233
    Dont cheat me, im expert in using crap light

  25. #25

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Doesnt that stick to the reflector/LED?
    Knowing how fragile the coating of a reflector is, it must have been damaged/scratched by that stuff.

  26. #26
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by kts View Post
    Doesnt that stick to the reflector/LED?
    Knowing how fragile the coating of a reflector is, it must have been damaged/scratched by that stuff.
    nope
    doesn't stick or clump [if you don't get it wet for some reason while you
    are in there, just don't do it in the shower or outdoors in the rain]

    and if the light is watertight...one or two grains may climb the reflector but it is temporary
    and doesn't affect anything anyway....
    posted by jh333233
    Dont cheat me, im expert in using crap light

  27. #27
    *Flashaholic* fyrstormer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Northern VA, USA
    Posts
    5,705

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Why not just cover half the lense with diffuser film?

  28. #28

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    What about using an orange peel reflector? Should lose less light compared to aerogel, and the effect would be unaffected by gravity.

  29. #29
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    /etc/hosts
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    Quote Originally Posted by fyrstormer View Post
    Why not just cover half the lense with diffuser film?
    I have 13 bikes, and each one... the light may be mounted a bit differently and rotated left or right a bit,
    depending on the angle of the bars or attachment point...anything that cannot rotate with gravity might
    make an asymmetric pattern if diffuser film is used as a 1/2 diffuser flood+throw.
    fluid aerogel bits will tend to stay on the bottom no matter which position the light is mounted.

    it's totally hands-free, mount-it-and-go, always-aimed-correctly, solution

    even trumps the Petzl NAO...if walking, I can aim light down for full flood, and aim it horizontal and have half flood half throw !


    I suppose if I did not have aerogel sitting around in a big fat jug, I would never have tried
    it...but I do, and I did...and it basically rocks ! little foamy glass rocks to be specific
    Last edited by 127.0.0.1; 07-17-2012 at 09:34 AM.
    posted by jh333233
    Dont cheat me, im expert in using crap light

  30. #30
    *Flashaholic* fyrstormer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Northern VA, USA
    Posts
    5,705

    Default Re: Silica Aerogel .1-1mm granules as LED diffuser material

    My preferred solution in that case would be to very carefully align the light holders on all my bikes, and try to come up with a way to snap the light into the holder in such a way that it doesn't affect the alignment of the holder at all. You do get geek points for using Aerogel, though.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •