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I have got 8 UV-C lamps connected to a portable battery(AC) through a smartplug. I am using 4 UV Ballast with 2 lamps connected to one ballast. I am controlling the lamps with help of a wireless controller which involves periodic switching on and off. When everything was new it was working absolutely fine, now the entire unit is 5months old and there is a frequent flickering of UV lamps. when i turn ON the UV light using the controller, it extinguishes automatically now and then But when i turn it ON again after sometime it again extinguishes. I am trying to debug what the problem is but I am not able to figure out the exact reasonenter image description here.

The specification of battery, UV ballast are in the respective links. Specification of the UV-C Lamps: Standard voltage AC100 / 200V Discharge start electricity pressure 94% Lamp current 0.800 ± 0.050 A Lamp pressure 92 V Lamp power 67 W

It would be really helpful if someone can give their insights. Upon serious research I also came to know that UV ballasts shelf life decreases with more we switch ON/OFF the lamps. Is this maybe the reason?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Lamps do go out over time. Ballasts last a very long time. \$\endgroup\$
    – Hearth
    Apr 6 at 15:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ thank you @Hearth.. But the manufacturer stated that the shelf life of the lamp is 8000 hours and its been used way less than that.. \$\endgroup\$
    – siddharth
    Apr 7 at 1:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ two notes: 1) Shelf life is how long the thing stays good when you're not using it at all, and probably isn't what you mean here; these lamps have unlimited shelf life. 2) gas discharge lamps, especially the "instant-on" ones that don't take a few seconds to turn on, have their useful life shortened significantly more by turning them on and off once than by leaving them on for hours at a time. \$\endgroup\$
    – Hearth
    Apr 7 at 2:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ sorry i Meant Rating life, not shelf life. Thanks a lot, very helpful. Also Is there a reason why the bottom of the lamps turn black(like a carbon coated) after using quite sometime? \$\endgroup\$
    – siddharth
    Apr 7 at 3:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's sputtering of the electrodes. Actually, that's exactly what I was talking about when I said the "instant on" lamps are more damaged by turning on; those turn on more aggressively which causes additional electrode sputtering, which damages the electrode. It's literally bits of the electrode being blown off and ending up on the outer tube. \$\endgroup\$
    – Hearth
    Apr 7 at 3:36
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It is gas discharge lamp, similar to regular luminescent lamp. That type of fixture does not work good then switching on-off happens very often. That brings them down very quickly. Ballast is not affected much, especially electronics, but tubes is.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ How can I improve it? Also manufacturer note is that shelf life of lamp is 8000 hours and I dont think it has been even 4000hours. \$\endgroup\$
    – siddharth
    Apr 7 at 1:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ Keep it works longer, one-off rarely. Use some timer. For example your schedule 2min on, 10-off, keep it works all 12 minutes. Shelf life you may achieve if you did not turn it off, works permanently. \$\endgroup\$
    – user263983
    Apr 7 at 1:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ you mean keep supplying the current to it always and switch it ON/OFF for a specific time in between? \$\endgroup\$
    – siddharth
    Apr 7 at 1:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ Understood.. Thank you \$\endgroup\$
    – siddharth
    Apr 7 at 2:00
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    \$\begingroup\$ You did not comment on the power mismatch of tubes to ballast (-2) but true all tubes degrade with each start, like incandescants \$\endgroup\$ May 9 at 20:16

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