Many methods are used by LUXMANN to deliver industry-leading reliability in its Tier 1 LED lighting products. Quality is a never-ending process that encompasses design and technology considerations, component selection, development test engineering and manufacturing test processes, as well as customer expectations, requirements, integration efforts and field experiences.
LED4Life uses a holistic approach to quality and reliability, taking into consideration every aspect in the total quality equation that contributes to a successful product.
Drawing upon collaborative work involving multiple disciplines around the globe, quality and reliability at LUXMANN is achieved by collective results orchestrated under defined and well-integrated processes. Contributions from ‘small efforts and initiatives by large numbers of people’ who are committed to the shared objective of superior quality and customer satisfaction make a fundamental difference when supported by a system which embraces the procedures, metrics, demonstration and maintenance methods. All these aspects are necessary to determine acceptable quality standards and continuous improvement beyond those standards. This is the basis of the Total Quality Initiative that is employed within LUXMANN
High reliability by design.
Unlike other lamp performance parameters, LED lamp reliability cannot be measured until quantitative data is available. Analysis of field failures is needed for accurate numbers. LUXMANN addresses this limitation by understanding the environmental and operational influences on LED lights integrated in complete installations, as well as various individual component factors that contribute to high quality and reliability.
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The characteristic requirements of each lamp type with its specific environmental and operational parameters are submitted to long-term quality and reliability calculations whose results are based on:
• Design and technology
• Component selection
• Development test process
• Manufacturing test process
Quality and reliability at LUXMANN begins with the design process. At the early stages of product development, reliability levels are set as a key design parameter along with fundamental lamp specifications including luminosity, temperature, driver type, access times, usage rates, shock and vibration tolerances and other core attributes. Reliability issues and failure modes of previous generation products are assessed and root cause analysed to design improvements into the architecture of the new product.
Customer feedback is applied to understand light requirements based on total fitting configurations, mechanical enclosures, integration concerns, usage environment and service life expectations.
Early in the lamp development cycle, new technologies and manufacturing techniques are evaluated for performance, quality, yield, as well as the ability to enhance product reliability. Verification testing is conducted by each LED-chip manufacturer at the component, sub-assembly, or at the prototype level as applicable to the concept under evaluation. From there, the individual components targeted for usage in the final product design are identified.
Driving reliability through component selection, sub-assembly and part suppliers is an integral part of the quality and reliability process. LUXMANN through a team of qualification specialists, conducts in-depth testing to collect the attributes which define best of breed components; this forms the basis of the supplier selection process.
Every component and sub-assembly is tested and the factories are audited to ensure all processes meet LUXMANN’s stringent requirements.
LUXMANN is known for its well-established processes in incoming inspection, factory audits and documentation practices provide clearly defined criteria for component acceptance. Failure of any part is analysed to root cause and driven back to the supplier for corrective action.
Improvement measures are analysed and certified before implementation approval is provided. Each vendor is actively engaged in collaborative work to ensure procurement specifications for on-going process quality and component reliability is attained by specific milestones designated within the product life cycle.
Inherent in the lamp design are other aspects of product reliability that are integral to the development phase including lamp power optimization functions to decrease heat dissipation and technologies such as on-the-fly error correction and features to ensure component integrity under a broad spectrum of field usage conditions. These technologies, mechanisms and techniques are defined early in the development cycle for testing and verification against critical lamp parameters such as performance, reliability, lumen maintenance and service life before being integrated into the final lamp design.
High reliability from verification testing.
Before a new lamp product is approved for release to manufacture, a series of performance and stress tests are conducted. Included in this battery of tests is Electrical Safety, EMC, operating and non-operating environment, power usage, shock, vibration, temperature, shipping and storage. Test parameters cover both in-specification usage as well as stress testing to the extremes of the product boundaries. Should issues arise, a cycle of testing and product improvement measures ensues until the new lamp meets or exceeds the designated specification levels and LUXMANN’s rigorous reliability standards.
The LUXMANN lamp product delivery methodology employed during lamp development utilizes an iterative process to interlock concurrent product and manufacturing development engineering efforts at designated points timed around a series of Design Reviews (DR) and Manufacturing Reviews (MR). The process drives learning and critical findings into the development process at multiple checkpoints before the product enters launch qualification.
Light fitting manufacturers contribute to the product verification process to define the verification sequences used in the evaluation of early lamps that are tested in the customers’ fittings by LUXMANN quality assurance engineers. During this stage, LUXMANN focuses on strength and weakness assessments which are used by development engineering to design margin into the base product. Quality assurance culminates in customer Reliability Demonstration Tests (RDT) that run for many hours to demonstrate the lamp meets the reliability requirements of the fitting manufacturer.
Each category of light has its own environmental and operating parameters including temperature, power, operational vibration, duty cycle and operational hours. LUXMANN lamps undergo functionality testing where aggressive temperature and voltage cycling is applied, pushing them beyond the thermal and power specifications of the lamp. For Super-bright class lamps, reliability engineers develop dynamic tests to induce early life failures. Engineers also check error-logging integrity at the lamp level where errors are forced, and any fault is detected and correctly reported.
All Tier 1 lamps are subject to Temperature Voltage Stress Testing to verify the lamps can support various combinations of temperature and voltage stress at sufficient margins to ensure durability in the final application.
Only when all supplier, development and manufacturing engineering and verification tests are successfully concluded is a new LUXMANN light deemed ready for release into volume manufacture.
High reliability from audits and control procedures.
Quality control audits are used to verify that processes and procedures are in place to react quickly to problems that may occur. Audits based on ISO-9000 standards are conducted at various stages of the product build process such as component material handling, manufacturing build and manufacturing tests. In addition, Ongoing Reliability Tests (ORTs) are conducted to monitor initial quality as well as the mid-term and long-term reliability of the products. LUXMANN also conducts an end-of-line quality sampling test called the Outgoing Quality Audit (OQA) on selected products, to simulate usage of the lamp in a stringent integration test. Together, these tests ensure repeatability of the processes required to consistently provide reliable and high quality lamp products.
High reliability and customer partnerships.
Once in the field, reliability of the same model light can vary by customer. The design of the fittings, the supporting service organization and integration handling of the lamp all contribute to determining lamp reliability.
LUXMANN has trained worldwide teams of technical support specialists who assist system integrators in reviewing the design for items particularly important to the service life of the lamp. Areas such as lamp mounting, grounding, shock, vibration, cooling and power utilization are investigated. These partnerships help the integrator derive the best possible reliability from LUXMANN lamps in their own application. Technical support specialists also provide on-going lamp handling trainings to minimize the possibility of Lamp damage during installation.
The independent Certification and application Labs used by LUXMANN, offer integration assistance for the usage of LUXMANN lights in the more traditional information technology applications. Specialists in the design of LUXMANN lights into consumer and handheld applications are available through newly established support centres in different world locations. Together, LUXMANN offers a broad spectrum of services to help customers meet specific objectives for their end-user products, including operating system compatibility testing, performance benchmarking, localised emissions and regulatory certification testing, mechanical design analysis for reliability and maximum expected service life of the lights and custom qualification programs to name a few.
LED4Life through a “Quality Architecture” umbrella makes Tier1 World Products by contributing to world-class quality in both product and services.
LUXMANN believes that quality is not the result of a single, one-time event, but is a comprehensive system supported by processes, procedures, metrics and disciplines that involve all areas of the corporation. Quality at LUXMANN extends from the initial lamp development effort through on-going, cooperative work with component and sub-assembly suppliers. It extends to customers in the form of highly reliable products and a support network of technical engineering specialists offering experience in lighting design, lamp integration and testing, as well as sales, marketing and financial teams versed in business practices oriented to the attainment of collaborative success. The Total Quality Initiative orchestrates the integration of a pervasive, systemic and dedicated approach to product and service quality that responds to market conditions and results in the consistent delivery of industry leading storage products as well as world-class business relationships.