Everything You Need to Know About TRIAC Dimming for LEDs

Triac dimming has become a fundamental aspect of modern lighting control systems, mainly LED lighting. Understanding how this technology works and its benefits can significantly enhance your grasp of lighting management. This comprehensive guide will delve into TRIAC dimming and shed light on its various aspects.

What Exactly is a Triac?

A Triac is a specialized semiconductor device that acts as a switch, allowing for precise control of AC power flow. It plays a crucial role in dimming applications by modulating the voltage and current delivered to the light source.

How Does Triac Dimming Work?

Triac dimming alters the waveform of the AC voltage supplied to the LED, effectively controlling its brightness. By adjusting the conduction angle of the Triac, the power sent to the LED is regulated, resulting in smooth dimming.

Triac Dimming


Why Choose TRIAC?

TRIAC dimming is valued for its simplicity, cost-effectiveness, and compatibility with existing wiring infrastructure. Its wide adoption in residential and commercial settings is due to these benefits.

What is Dimming? 

Dimming involves the capacity to tune the luminosity of a light source finely. It is a crucial element within lighting control systems, facilitating the modulation of ambiance, energy preservation, and visual comfort enhancement.

0/1-10V Dimming for LEDs 

The LED 0/1-10V dimming technique utilizes a control signal from 0 to 10 volts to regulate light intensity finely. Frequently applied in commercial contexts, it offers compatibility with a wide array of lighting fixtures.

1-10V Dimming

Dali Dimming

Digital Addressable Lighting Interface (DALI) is a sophisticated protocol that enables individual control of each light fixture in a system. It offers advanced features like scene setting and group control.

Dali Dimming

PWM Dimming 

Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) dimming entails swift alternation between LED activation and deactivation. The balance between activation and deactivation duration influences the perceived brightness level. While esteemed for its precision, PWM dimming can induce flickering at lower brightness settings.

PWM Power Supply


What is Leading Edge?

Leading Edge Dimming, a form of TRIAC dimming, initiates the AC waveform with a turned-off current immediately after it crosses the zero point. This technique is commonly applied with incandescent bulbs, generating a voltage surge during each half cycle, prompting a current surge to the light source.

What is Trailing Edge?

Trailing-edge dimming involves cutting off the trailing edge of the AC waveform. It’s gentler on LEDs and is the preferred method for dimming them.

Differences Between Leading-edge and Trailing-edge Dimmers

Choosing between leading-edge and trailing-edge dimmers impacts the dimming performance, LED lifespan, and flickering potential.

What is a Dimming Curve?

A dimming curve represents how the light output of an LED responds to changes in the input voltage. It helps adjust the dimming profile to match human perception.

TRIAC LED Control System And Its Wiring

Implementing a TRIAC-based LED control system requires proper wiring and consideration of load compatibility to achieve optimal dimming performance.

TRIAC Controller & Receiver

TRIAC dimming requires a controller to send signals to the receiver, which interfaces with the light source. This communication enables the dimming process.

TRIAC Dimmers Used in LEDs

TRIAC dimmers designed for LED lighting must be compatible with the unique characteristics of LEDs, ensuring smooth and flicker-free dimming across the full range.

Pros and Cons of TRIAC Dimmers for LEDs 

TRIAC dimming presents economical solutions, yet it might result in compatibility challenges, flickering at lower intensity levels, and restricted control when juxtaposed with sophisticated systems like DALI.


Ena Leung

Ena Leung

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