Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Potential Light Bulb Ban Spells Doom for Lava Lovers?

I'm sure everybody in this forum has heard something about the phasing out of incandescent bulbs. The following Wikipedia article contains a timeline for various countries around the world:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phase_out_of_incandescent_light_bulbs
Lava Lamps require heat to operate, and the ideal all-in-one light+heat source is an incandescent bulb. Small bulbs will likely be replaced with LEDs, whereas most standard sockets use CFLs. There is a Lowe's right down the street from my house that I always use to get my light bulbs, but lately, it has been getting harder to find the right bulbs for my lamps. I have a Purple/Yellow Grande Lava Lamp that I ordered online some time ago, but when it arrived, it was so cloudy that I could not see the bubbles except when they pressed against the wall of the glass. Frustrated that it did not clear up, I put the monstrous ugly globe away in my closet for about six or seven months and basically forgot about it. When I pulled it back out, there was still a slight haze, but it is clear enough so that I can see strait through the globe to the other side while it is turned off, and so at least I will be able to appreciate the movement. The globe lit up, but two hours later, the bulb went out, and the lava had never flowed.

I walk to Lowe's, and they no longer had the miniature 100w flood lamps that my Grande Lava Lamp required, nor do they have in stock the large 65w flood lights required by the three recessed ceiling fixtures in our living room. They are on a dimmer switch, which I sometimes use for ambient light while watching movies in the dark. These lamps also last an incredibly long time since they are cycled on/off with a dial instead of a switch. Well, we still have only two out of the three bulbs in our living room, and nothing in the base of my Grande. Someday, we may be able to permanently replace the three ceiling fixtures with LED lamps (which can be safely dimmed in one of two ways: by digital duty-cycling or by analog dimmer circuits), although the spectra of white LEDs have a "moonlight" effect, with a narrow blue band and a wide yellow band that tends to mute the vibrancy of reds and greens into that of browns and olives.

So unless somebody creates a hybrid lamp base with separate light source and heating element, the future of Lava Lamps as we know it may be doomed...

Attached is a proposed solution to the lava lighting issue.

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Yep I'm hearing you on this... Australia has already banned imports of cfl bulbs - it's just remaining stockpiles left now and they're going fast. I've stocked up on globes but I only have 1 spare grande globe - once that goes I don't know what I'll do cos you can't get anything like that here anymore...
When are they coming out with that? Looks very nifty!
If only they will create a screw-in replacement module (LED/heating coil) that screws into the light socket. Also, I am wondering if the heating element will cause premature fading of the LEDs???

I know they can resist some heat, although I imagine they will survive okay if the temp underneath never goes above 100 Celsius. I've never tried boiling LEDs though. Heck, most solder melts around 200, and I know the leads are very excellent heat-conductors. Anybody know what temperature blue/white LEDs break down at?
Do you think thay will keep seling the Bulbs even if thay are band?


Roger
This is a great idea from lava lite and hopefully a solution for the future fazing out of the traditional but much loved light bulb. I do love the original light bulb though and used to have quite a big collection of them.
This threat of the light bulb ban is VERY upsetting to me. I hope that halogen sources won't be affected as my Martin Professional lights are my favorite.

Regular light bulbs are very nice as accent lighting too as they produce a very nice warm colour temperature that discharge and LED sources can not match. Heres another.... the technology for dimming LEDs with a proper smooth dimmer curve just doesn't exist yet.

As far as Lava Lamps, it looks like their future is safe.... but what of my Martin effect lights and scanners... that scares me.
LEDs can be dimmed either by pulse-width modulation, or by simply reducing the level of current. Existing dimmer switches work by using a variable inductor to reduce the line voltage applied to a light bulb. Albeit LEDs are current based and not voltage based, it would be entirely possible to string many of them together in series with a shunt resistor (a high-voltage rectifier circuit would convert the AC current to DC prior to feeding the LEDs - this would eliminate the 60/120Hz flicker effect of driving the LEDs on AC current, and would also eliminate the possibility of damage due to reverse bias). While it is true that the shunt resistor would waste a small amount of wattage, it would also permit the LEDs to be dimmed in the same manner as traditional light bulbs.

Granted most LED light bulbs use current regulators for precise output control, it would still be possible to modify the circuit such that the current output varies with voltage input. I doubt that would add too much cost to the bulb itself. Still, the atmosphere created by dimmed LEDs would likely resemble cold moonlight and will probably never compare to the warm candle-like hues created by dimmed incandescence.
Anyone know when and where to pick one of these up?
There are people on these forums who appear to have close links to Mathmos. Is any definitive statement available from Mathmos regarding the future availability of replacement light bulbs for their products?.
My company is making a commercial lamp that will use a non light heat source combined with LED technology. It will be slightly larger than the grande and projected retail price will be under $150. It will also have a lot of cool new features that will blow you all away. Oozing gooheads will be the first to know when we have a release date.


www.magmatower.com
I was just gonna send people your way, Jonny! The idea of a bulbless lamp intrests me.
Induction lava lamps are the future. Anyone with the money can make one. Just need to get the right size/design built and tested. Seems pretty simple from what I am thinking about. That coupled with LED lights, your golden. Best of all, a retrofit might be possible for older lamps as well. Simple screw in application should suffice.

Only problem with all this - Mathmos is the only one that would be capable of doing it as they are in the financial position to do so.

Any other item I would be hesitant to use due to long term durability and quality. Most companies are out to make a cheap product with a markup to make money. Cheap = crap.

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