LED Manufacturer Brightens up Surgical Devices
A LED upgrade kit manufacturer has adapted its proprietary commercial product for use in medical and surgical applications. Terralux Inc. (Boulder, CO; www.terralux.biz) has designed a high-powered LED system for use in Class 1 medical devices. The system will be used to replace incandescent bulbs in handheld surgical instruments.
Founded in 2003, Terralux offers upgrade kits for use in portable lighting. The kits include an LED light engine designed to replace incandescent bulbs that usually burn out in a few hours. The unit couples an LED with an electronic component that regulates light output and optimizes power consumption. When used in place of an incandescent bulb, the unit emits pure white light and can operate up to 100,000 hours without a change in light intensity as the battery runs down. In addition, the product extends the battery life by using a proprietary PowerPush circuitry, which matches the LED to the power supply. Unlike incandescent bulbs, which break easily when dropped, the light engine is an extremely rugged, solid-state device that is almost impervious to shock and vibration.
Lighting used in medical and surgical equipment is often custom-made and, therefore, expensive to maintain. Terralux adapted its existing light engine technology for the medical OEM’s product, says CEO Anthony Catalano.“We coupled the light from the LED with an optical fiber cable and added some mechanical packaging,” he says. Since the company already mass-produces the light engines, the OEM was able to reduce costs associated with design development and prototyping. “By taking our technology and moving it over to the OEM’s product, we eliminated a lot of engineering hurdles,” adds Catalano.
Regularly used to enhance flashlights made by Mag Instruments, the light engines can be used in other medical applications.
— Corinne Litchfield