Here’s a simple tip that can significantly improve your LED flashlight. I use it wherever I can.
The trick is really simple: Use thermal grease to bridge air gaps, thereby increasing thermal conductivity and decreasing the LEDs operating temperature.
As you can see in these charts (taken from the Cree XM-L datasheet, © Cree, Inc), temperature has a significant impact on the LED performance.
Improved cooling will result in lower temperature of the LED, thereby improving:
- energy efficiency
In the example of the TrustFire (or UltraFire) X8, this can easily achieved by applying thermal grease to the screw threads of the flashlights head.
You can use the same thermal compounds used for CPUs (like Arctic Silver), but even simple (zinc oxide based) thermal grease will yield significant improvements.