Have you seen the NYE ball for this year? It’s a massive LED Ball of Awesomeness!
LEDs Mag has an article about the big LED star that will help us bring in the new year – 2009 will at least start with some idea of brilliance as that ball hits the contacts at the bottom, signalling the end of 2008. The picture’s caption, from LEDs Mag’s post about it, says that the New Years’ Eve Ball is “powered by 32,256 Philips Luxeon Rebel LEDS,” and that “the new Ball is capable of creating a palette of more than 16 million vibrant colors and billions of patterns.”
Awesome. Do you think it will make it less cold and miserable to stand in Times Square waiting for that thing to fall?
Apparently this new ball is an extensive product of multiple tests and experimentation. From the article:
Lighting Science Group, which designed, developed, and produced an integrated lighting system for this year’s and last year’s ball, tackled the weather obstacle. Extensive electrical, mechanical, thermal, and environmental tests were performed on the system’s 672 LED modules, power systems, and power and data distribution networks to assure long-term performance through all kinds of weather.
“We had a proven LED module design [from last year’s ball] that we were able to modify in the time frame for the increased weatherproof-ness because it’s becoming a permanent installation. It had to be ready for whatever the New York environment could throw at it,” said John Burne, special projects lighting manager with LSG.
An integrated thermal management system was installed to, among other things, help cool the ball during the baking heat of the NY summer. Every LED board has substantial heat sinking on the rear with active thermal management. Thermal sensors inside the bulb that communicate back to the media server can dim the bulb as temperatures rise. Blowers inside the bulb can also evacuate the hot air, if necessary.
I’m looking forward to seeing it!