Lighting : Lighting February 2015 - Vol 35 Issue 1
18 LIGHTING MAGAZINE | February/March 2015 lighting control systems are still in their infancy when it comes to their potential for application. The intersection of lighting controls and LEDs is one area that is seeing controls technology undergoing a phase of rapid development and expansion. According to DiLouie, LEDs are ideally suited to advanced lighting controls, and are rapidly gaining adoption in a broad range of lighting applications. “LEDs can be frequently switched with minimal impact on lamp life, they dim smoothly to less than 1 percent of output, dimming is likely to increase lamp life, and there is a linear relationship between lighting and power across a majority of the dimming range,” he says. “Today, LED lighting can be controlled using wired and wireless systems, and using virtually any control method or protocol. As digital devices, they are inherently compatible with digital lighting controls and associated control strategies.” Where LEDs particularly excel in the context of lighting controls is their compatibility with light fixture-based sensors and controls, allowing individual fixture control and the potential to incorporate other sensors allowing collecting of environmental and occupancy data. These include occupancy sensing, which tells the system which building areas are occupied and when; temperature sensing; air quality sensing; and daylight sensing, providing a wealth of new opportunities to integrate lighting control systems with other building management services, such as air conditioning and automated blinds. According to Andrew Sherar, the Technical Director of Lightmoves in Melbourne, sharing data between these systems leads to highly effective energy management practices in commercial spaces. “The sky’s the limit – you can also build other types of sensing in there as well and collate all that data, so effectively rather than the air conditioning guys having their own sensors and the lighting guys having their own sensors, you can all of a sudden distribute sensors around the building that are being collated by the lighting system [and that data] can then be deployed to everybody else,” says Sherar, whose company specialises in entertainment and architectural lighting integration and commissioning. Sensor-based lighting systems have the added benefit of providing greater opportunities for individualised control. Smartphone apps, for example, are becoming more and more commonplace, allowing users to set individual preferences for different types of lighting, such as task lighting at a desk space, or meeting room lighting in a frequently-used room. “You can already have the preset that suits you, rather than suiting the guy that actually commissioned the room,” Sherar says. The individual sensors embedded in each lighting fixture also create a dialogue between user and controls; for example, Sherar says, if a user walks into a meeting room, the system will be able to use location information to pinpoint where the user is, and adjust the room lighting to suit his/her pre-programmed preferences. “If you walk in there, it will know where you are and you can control your own levels accordingly, plus you can have your own set of favourites set up,” he says. The integration of lighting control with other building management systems is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT), an interconnected world in which smart devices can communicate and share data without the need for humans to be involved. According to DiLouie, integrating commercial building systems into the IoT is a logical next step, particularly for LED fixture-based sensing applications that can collect data on multiple variables in a commercial space. “The next frontier of lighting control in commercial buildings is integration into systems built on an Internet of Things (IoT) concept,” DiLouie says. “In other words, the LED luminaire could be installed with additional sensors that measure occupancy, pollution levels, traffic, temperature or pretty much anything else that can and should be measured or detected.
Lighting December 2014 - Vol 34 Issue 6
Lighting April 2015 - Vol 35 Issue 2