How to control a multi-stage light with a single dimmer

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by garch, Feb 1, 2010.

  1. garch

    Thread Starter Member

    Aug 23, 2008
    I have a light pendant fitting that contains two T5 fluorescent tubes and two mains halogens. I would like to use a ZWave dimmer (triac based) to control several stages of the light fitting. For example:
    1) Say from 0% to 60% power only the halogens are powered on and are dimmed from zero per cent to 60 per cent
    2) Say at 60% to 80% only one fluorescent tube is switched on and the halogens are switched off
    3) Say at 90% and beyond two fluorescent tubes are switched on and the halogens are switched off
    Would it be better to use a series of operational amplifiers to achieve this or would it be better to use a simple microcontroller to do this? I do not require the circuit to drive the fluorescent tubes as I have electronic ballast to achieve this. I just need for the circuit to switch e.g. a relay, to power up the electronic ballast.
    Many thanks, Garch