This is a simple 4 W fluorescent lamp driver circuit that can be operated from a 12 V supply.The first part of the circuit includes a NE555 timer IC wired as an astable multivibrator.The output pulses from the IC are amplified by the transistor Q1.The transformer steps up the collector voltage to around 1KVto drive the fluorescent lamp. Before using the circuit, set the R2 at full resistance and switch on the supply, now adjust R2 so that the collector current is 300mA (use a multimeter) and this is the optimum setting for the lamp.Operating the lamp in this setting will give a better life.
Circuit diagram with Parts list.
- Assemble the circuit on a general purpose PCB.
- The IC 1 must be mounted on a holder.
- Use heat sink for transistor Q1.
- Use a 3 V primary , 230 V secondary, 5W transformer for T1.
- Power the circuit from a 12V battery or 12V DC power supply.
- The L1 can be a 6 inch, 4W fluorescent lamp.