Author Topic: 20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions  (Read 869 times)
sfsearchlights
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20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions « on: January 22, 2023, 08:53:47 PM » Author: sfsearchlights
So I'm thrilled to find this community of potential collaborators and commiserators.
I have a collection of 20kW military battlefield illuminators, formerly used by NASA to light up Saturn 5 and Shuttle launches, which I've reanimated into an interactive art project. Web site https://projectflashlight.org


The lamps are current production from SQP at $8000 each - it's an art project so trying to remain (more) economical. Trying find some spares at rather less than that. These are the same lamp as used in IMax projectors - they swap out at the end of warranty (and destroy them) - we can get some more life out of those - would love leads on lamps or connections to IMax projectionists?

We also have a number of lamps that are out of spec and can't be used - if someone wants one for a collection let me know (pay for the box and shipping). Note these are for display only - don't even try to test without liquid cooling.
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Re: 20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions « Reply #1 on: January 23, 2023, 12:24:16 AM » Author: LightBulbFun
I cant help with finding any lamps for cheaper sadly,

but I just wanted to say I very much enjoyed reading the technical FAQ on your website! :)

https://projectflashlight.org/an-tvs-3-technical-faq/

they are some awesome fixtures and awesome to get the technical low-down on them!




on the lamps that you have which are out of spec, do you mean that in that they are near EOL and have become out of spec, or are they new/NOS lamps that are of the wrong specifications for your search lights?

if you mean the later, and if you have any more details/pictures on which they are exactly, id potentially be quite interested in one! but i am not sure if you can/would be willing to ship internationally?


and indeed! Photonicinduction found out sadly the hard way what happens when you run one of these without water-cooling!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=budMkPhUE4c
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sfsearchlights
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Re: 20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions « Reply #2 on: January 23, 2023, 01:20:18 AM » Author: sfsearchlights
Thanks.
Lamps are for these units but out of spec for operation.

So one of the collections I acquired was a service depot for these units, and I have 20 lamps of various vintages, most of which were failed and swapped out (one had a tag "draws 900A" - spec is 465A), some are missing fittings, and some are Hanovia type (which according to my NASA contact were more likely to explode) - the current lamps are Superior Quartz. As the xenon leaks out or is absorbed the current goes up - unfortunately luminance does not proportionately increase. Though the AN/TVS-3 fixture is rated for 20kW the power supply appears easily capable of double that, but I don't think the cooling system would keep up.

Photonicinduction are lucky that poor unfortunate lamp didn't explode. "Air-cooled" short-arc xenons are actually radiatiatevly cooled - the anode is a solid tungsten cylinder that glows white hot and is separated from the glass seal using clever designs. In liquid-cooled lamps the anode is hollow and thin - it is conducting all of its heat into the coolant, the anode cylinder is sealed to the envelope - safety overtemp switch shuts it down at 235°F - problems occur with hot shutdown and the coolant boils in the lamp. Run without circulating coolant and Bad Things Happen.

Happy to ship one internationally, if you figure out method and pay for it.
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Alex
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Re: 20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions « Reply #3 on: January 23, 2023, 02:25:43 AM » Author: Alex
Hello,
So I can radily find a degassed 15kW lamp for IMAX projectors but that does not help of course. 
Reagrding a cheaper source, there is right now a USHIO UWX-15KD for Imax projectors on ebay for $1400. Still a lots of money but less than the $8000.
It is however rated 15kW only. But i do not think that is too much of a problem. Many Ballast may be dimmed by reducing lamp current. I do not know what your art project needs for a light output, but maybe 15kW is enough.
Most important is that the socket with the cooling connection. If you want, I can take picture os my lamps base, in order to see if it would fit. (I have alredy a 15kW lamp from a imax projector in collection).

Also how publicly present will you art instalation be? If it is public in a big city it may be worth asking Ushio or the superior quartz products inc. to sponsor a lamp...

Regarding your lamps,  I would be too very interested in a spare lamp, especially as your lamps seem to bade by the superior quartz products inc. and not by USHIO. I do not have one of these. Shipping would be to Germany or France tho.

best regards,

Alex
« Last Edit: January 23, 2023, 05:53:08 AM by Alex » Logged

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Re: 20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions « Reply #4 on: January 23, 2023, 05:55:00 AM » Author: Alex
Hello,
I rechecked my ebay listing. The lamp, at least the one in the picture is used. You can see residue of oxides devolved in the coolend on the lamp base, as well as a black discoloration on the anode.  So using these lamp would be a big question mark. I found another one which however seems to be new:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/294661436233

Also I am wondering, what determines if a lamp is out of spec with these skybeamers in your case. I know from cinema projectors, mainly cathode wear determines when a lamp is out of spec as it may introduce a flickering picture due to the discharge moving in the lamp.
When I got most of my cinema projector lamps, I got them from a guy who had a small cinema projector maintenance business. I remember that a certain lamp type he was not selling to me or only offering me lamps that were pitch black. I think somewhere I still have one of those. He told me that he used these particular lamps in skybeamers he would rent out, were the arc geometry and stability was not so important. In those application he would run the lamps until they were pitch black or mechanically failed (exploding). He explained me that the optics in the skybeamer were much more rugged then the ones in cinema projectors.
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Re: 20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions « Reply #5 on: January 25, 2023, 02:29:29 AM » Author: sfsearchlights
Well I learned something! I had no idea that Ushio made a liquid cooled lamp. But looking at the Ushio design, adapting it to the AN/TVS-3 fixture might be challenging - the mount points for the lamp are a ring bonded to the glass on the anode end (front) and a bearing sleeve bonded to the glass on the cathode end (rear). With an SQP IMax lamp I may (I hope!) be able to create a jig and bond salvaged parts to the glass (in the correct positions) and replace the end fittings (these are locked to the tungsten electrodes with snap rings). There is one on eBay for $4k, which is more than I'll pay for an experiment.

Obviously no interest in de-gassed lamps - but if I can catch them before they do that - perfect!

I have seen out-of-spec exhibit in 3 ways: excessive current draw, failure to ignite and unstable arc. I haven't seen much flicker with these, even though some of the cathode tips are a bit melted. This may be due to the DC supply being 1200Hz bumpy DC (3-phase full-wave-rectified 400Hz). To contrast this, a few of my air-cooled 10kW lights show flicker even with brand new lamps, and very little DC fluctuation.

Some of spares are Hanovia and some are SQP - I'll try to grab some photos next time at the warehouse.
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Re: 20kW liquid cooled xenon short-arcs (SQP SX20000D): wanted, available, questions « Reply #6 on: January 25, 2023, 03:00:56 PM » Author: AngryHorse
WOW!, that’s the most crazy discharge lamp I’ve ever seen!, I don’t mean I haven’t seen one before, but that I’ve not seen one lit to their full output!
I wonder what the exact temperature is in the arc core itself?, probably on a par with our sun?  :D
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